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Local Ad-Options

A local guinea pig adoption. Photo by Sam Montagne.

Oregon, unlike many other areas, has a well-financed, advertised, and executed organization at the disposal of the citizens to make it easy to find the perfect pet. Though the Oregon Humane Society (OHS) is undoubtedly a valuable resource, it is far from being the only one available in the Oregon/Washington area. If one wants to find the perfect pet for their house, they should check every shelter (usually filled to the brim with animals waiting to be adored) rather than refreshing the Humane Society website daily, looking for the perfect dog that is already waiting 20 minutes away. Being aware of all your options is a pivotal part of the adoption process.

The Pixie Project is a rescue that not only strives to help the animals it houses, but the community surrounding it. Jessica Berg is the Development Director at The Pixie Project, having nearly 8 years of animal rescue experience in Eugene prior to her current position. Berg says the active and supportive role in the community is what drew her to the job. “We are also a community resource for pet food, medication, collars, leashes, beds… if someone is having a tough time and they need a little help [taking proper care of their animal], we’ll try to help,” she says. Berg also explains their services beyond material objects. “We have trainers who are able to help people work with [animal] behavioral issues to keep them from surrendering their pets.”

The main goal of The Pixie Project is to provide its animals with a safe and happy new home as well as provide owners with a low-stress experience. Before adoption, all animals are already provided the extensive treatments and procedures that each one needs. This is different from several other organizations which expect the owner to handle all medical conditions after the adoption. Doing it beforehand saves the new owner a giant veterinary bill. This is just one example of a gem that can be discovered by doing the slightest bit of research.

While there are several good choices, one option that should be actively avoided is buying from breeders. “Adopt, don’t shop” (an animal rights slogan), says Franklin student and animal rights activist, Nora Weisbord (12). Weisbord co-founded a volunteer organization entitled Youth for the Voiceless, speaking out for the rights of animals. “Adopting is much, much, much better than buying. Dogs raised in puppy mills have had horrible things happen to them. They can have deformities, some sort of mutation that makes them sick or die early. That’s from inbreeding. Adopting locally is the best thing,” Weisbord says. Recently, California drafted a bill (Assembly Bill 485) stating that pet stores are no longer permitted to sell any animals not from a shelter, rescue, or something similar in nature. This bill was officially passed on October 13. Now, if an animal originating from a breeder is sold, a misdemeanor has been committed. Weisbord also offers other methods of adoption: “You can always look up on Craigslist and ask ‘How do you have this animal, are you breeding?’” she says. “It can take awhile to find the right little guy.”

Savin Juice Dog Rescue, Multnomah Humane Society, and Rabbit Advocates are some more alternatives to the Oregon Humane Society. Overall, the best strategy for finding the perfect fit is to do research to find the right fit.

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How to Approach Healing a Broken Home with the Help of School

It is very difficult to heal a broken home. Sometimes it’s best as the minor to cease contact altogether from their household, and other times it’s best to give space until they feel ready to begin reconnecting with their guardian.

Only about 69% of children in the U.S live at home with their birth parents, therefore it is incredibly common to need a change in environment due to lack of safety. Unfortunately, most youth are not educated on how to leave an unhealthy home-life, or even what an unhealthy home-life is. Minors in the care of an irresponsible adult can be victims of mental and physical stress, and the best way to prevent escalation is to speak with a stable adult who is trustworthy and is well advised to handle these situations. If the environment is physically or verbally abusive you can follow the same instruction or go straight to Department of Child services and/or local police. Another resource that many are not aware of to use in situations like this are the staff at school. They’re always there to help.

A Franklin student who prefered to stay anonymous, unfortunately has become accustomed to living with a troublesome  father who struggles with bipolar disorder and also alcoholism. After struggling with their father’s mistreatment for many years, they reached out to the Oregon Department of human services (DHS). Though no problems were solved because the student claimed only emotional abuse rather than physical. For support they confided in their close friends as well as their significant other. The student’s plan is to move out of their father’s house at the age of 17 this coming January and live with their significant other.

DHS prides themselves as being an Oregon human rights protective agency meant to ensure the wellbeing of all Oregonians. Cases like the anonymous Franklin student’s are overlooked simply because there hasn’t been any physical abuse yet. Physical abuse is always prioritized.

“It’s incredibly difficult for young teens to reach out to adults in times like this, especially when all they have known is for adults to ask like that and to treat them like that, ” explains youth counselor Lara with Morrison Child and Family Care Clinic. “When I was a child and I had a difficult time with my family, there was no one to talk to, or at least that’s what I thought.” Lara claims that it is very important for adults of any relationship with a child to check in about their stress to prevent and relieve any anxiety.

If you are experiencing emotional abuse you must contact a teacher, a friend’s parent, or your school guidance counselor/therapist. If you experiencing physical abuse you are can call 911. Thankfully, Portland Oregon is full of clinics which take health insurance if you are diagnosed with anxiety, depression, or any mental health issue to receive emotional support while going through these kind of stressful situations.

Franklin has two female therapists who are well experienced and certified to help students with any emotional support they may need. It is dire to their health and mental stability to stay in touch with adults around them, and communicate when there are threats. If the student lives in foster care or in the respite care and the adults in charge of their care are threatening or hurting them in anyway, they must reach out someone in person while they’re at school. Franklin  can be the most useful tool to staying safe and healthy.

 

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Homeless

Via MB298 Wikimedia CC

In Multnomah County, the homeless population has increased by around 10 percent in the last two years. Although there is increasing demand for help, there are simply not enough resources. In Portland, nearly one in seven residents experience food insecurity and in the last two years the Oregon Food Bank distributed over one million emergency food boxes.

With nearly 4,177 people with no permanent housing on any given night, it’s clear that something needs to be done. However, help is often seasonal and citizens primarily help around winter and Christmas when people are in the “giving mood.” Although the demand for space in homeless shelters is much higher at this time due to the cold weather, more attention needs to be drawn to this issue in the other months of the year. There is so much that people can do to get involved, at very little or no cost to themselves, even if it’s as little as having a conversation with someone.

With so many students together, schools have the opportunity to raise a significant amount of money. Franklin co-class president, Clara Mays says, “all you have to do is pay attention to the ways you are impacting your community and help out when you can.”  Not only can students donate, volunteer work is a graduation requirement and there are constant vacancies at food shelters. Getting involved is easy; if you can’t donate money or volunteer you can give your old clothing, any canned food you don’t need, or advocate for those who cannot advocate for themselves. “Students just need to be better informed about the options they have to get involved,” says Mays. For more information about how to help, visit the Oregon Food Bank or any local homeless shelter in your area.

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International Students

(from left) Tanskanen and Biolveský eat lunch in Franklin’s cafeteria. Not pictured Caballero and Crespo. Photo by Destiny Sagli.

Alejandra Caballero (12), Adam Biloveský (12), Gonzalo Crespo (12), and Paavo Tanskanen (12) are four new faces to our Franklin community. This past August, they all arrived to begin their abroad programs in Portland. Coming from all around the world, the four were anxious but thrilled to explore a new city, connect with new people, and experience a different culture. Biloveský, Caballero, and Tanskanen met through the American Field Service, or AFS-USA, a leading organization in international student exchange programs. Crespo travelled through Education Travel and Culture, a similar exchange program offering opportunities abroad. The four students add interesting new perspectives to Franklin as Caballero is from Paraguay, Crespo from Spain, Tanskanen from Finland, and Biloveský from Slovakia.

The students described their motivation to participate in an abroad program as a way to continue seeking new opportunities. For both Tanskanen and Crespo, this is their second time being exchange students. Tanskanen went to Italy and Spain in the ninth grade with his school and from there was inspired to go abroad again. Last year, Crespo lived for the entire year in a small town in Ireland. He described the transition from living at home to living as an exchange student as a bit shocking. “It’s kind of different to learn to call the people here family and feel at home,” he voiced. Crespo is not alone in his views of entering a foreign environment. According to Go Overseas, some of the biggest challenges studying abroad can be the overwhelming mix of a new culture and new customs. Complete immersion in a different environment can be intimidating; however, it provides students with an opportunity to expand language skills and encourages broader understanding of worldly perspectives.

In the three months the students have been in Portland, they are very impressed with Franklin and what Portland has to offer. “[Portland’s] a very creative city,” Caballero noted, after describing her recent trip to the Saturday Market. Crespo travelled to Bend earlier in the year where his host family has a vacation home. He really enjoys the abundant nature of Portland and its surrounding area. In addition to visiting the Oregon Coast, Tanskanen went to see the Pendleton rodeo in early September.

The students are eager to explore more of the Pacific Northwest and continue learning about American culture as well as forming new relationships at their new school and home.

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The History of Costumes

Behind Franklin’s main stage, the costume storage room houses all costumes used for productions. Photo by Jackson Hartigan.

Halloween is a holiday of traditions. There is the tradition of children going from door to door to collect candy. There is the tradition of saying, “Trick or Treat!” For many there may be the tradition of watching a certain movie, of decorating, of filling up on sweets. However, none of these go as far back as the tradition of dressing up in costume.

A costume is, as Merriam Webster defines it, “An outfit worn to create the appearance characteristic of a particular period, person, place, or thing.” By this definition, the first costumes appeared as masks, as early as 7000 BC. Masks originated in Africa, where they were used in ceremonies to represent spirits of mythological characters, spirits of animals and ancestors, and sometimes moral values or ideas. Masks soon emerged independently in different cultures around the world, serving as religious items, tools for self-protection, and later for entertainment.

The emergence of theatrical costume as we know it now coincided with that of Greek theater, in the sixth century BC. Thespis, a Greek priest, is credited as the first to portray a fictional character on stage—that is, he was the first actor. The modern format of the play developed soon thereafter, and such performances became increasingly prevalent throughout Greece. Both masks and costumes were used in Greek theater. Performances were held in large outdoor amphitheaters, so masks made the emotions of characters easier to read from far away, and some even had a megaphone-like effect of amplifying the actor’s voice. Costumes were often much like everyday clothing, though more elaborate or unique, to better demonstrate attributes of the character, such as social status or profession. Some costumes were more unconventional, particularly those portraying animals, or mythical creatures. Actors occasionally wore deadly lead-based makeup, which was used in that time both on and off-stage. However, it made it difficult for actors to play multiple characters and carried none of the added benefits of using masks.
Halloween has a complex history, with roots stemming from multiple European traditions. The primary one, however, is the Gaelic festival of Samhain, still observed today, which marks the end of the harvest season. A key part of Samhain was the act of guising or mumming, which were essentially early forms of trick-or-treating. Costumes have indeed been a part of Halloween since its creation, and are no less of one now. In fact, it seems that costumes have been given a fairly constant role throughout history. For thousands of years, they have deviated little from their original formula—articles of clothing meant to portray a character. However, in recent years, this may be changing.

Theatrical costume designer Kimberly Smay volunteers for the theater departments at Cleveland and Madison. She has been doing so for quite some time, ever since her own child got involved in theater. She has participated in some professional work, although she prefers working with students. Smay has liked clothing for as long as she can remember. “Clothing tells you so much about a person,” she says. And this is true, both in theater and in film. Smay explains that while building techniques for theatrical costume have indeed changed very little, a new development is working its way deeper and deeper into motion pictures: digital rendering. While use of Computer Generated Images (CGI) in film have existed for decades, they are becoming increasingly prevalent and widely used. They are now not only used for special effects, but also to enhance stunt scenes, to compensate for lack of resources, to edit scenes, and in the case of Logan (2017), to insert Hugh Jackman’s face onto his stuntman’s. At Cleveland, says Smay, students interested can learn the basics of digital rendering. Digital imagery is indeed the future of entertainment, and it does have many perks. Yet, are there any drawbacks? Perhaps we should hesitate before we dawn our digital masks in this new age of acting.

As CGI becomes increasingly prevalent, it is important that traditional costuming practices continue. They are important to many, and an integral part of theatrical tradition.