Category Archives: Circles in Action

2019 CUSA Leadership Conference Network Awards

Best Video #1:

Circles Newaygo, Michigan

Encapsulating what Circles is with this animated video


Best Video #2:

Circles Davis County, Utah

Highlighting the people and community in a Circles Chapter


Best Social Media:

Arrive Utah

Best Newsletter:

Circles Ashland, Virginia


Outstanding Allies:

Joyce Gale of Circles Utah Valley

Joyce Gale has been a Circles Ally for the last three years. She was matched with a Circle Leader named Menou who raised four kids as a single mom. Menou is unable to read because of a brain injury when she was young, which restricted some jobs that were open to her even though she is a hard worker, a quick learner, and a valuable employee.

Joyce befriended Menou and went right to work to help Menou overcome this obstacle by doing research on this kind of disability, finding a doctor who would donate the therapy she needed. Joyce went with Menou to the appointments and supported Menou through these, explaining the confusing items that Menou couldn’t read for herself. Most importantly, Joyce was a steady friend in helping Menou navigate things. With the help of Joyce, Menou graduated from Circles last month at 200% of FPG!

Circles owes much of its success to allies like Joyce. Joyce says, “My life has been blessed because I know Menou. She is my friend. I love her and want to help her in any way I can. Because of Circles I have gained greater compassion and understanding of those in poverty. Since joining Circles, I am a better friend to everyone I meet, and I am confident to offer kindness and helpfulness to others. I have a better understanding of how to help and support people and how to allow them to become their best selves.”

Beth Young of Circles Davis County, Utah

“Beth brings an energy to our group that is contagious in driving change. Her ability to pinpoint a person’s skills, ability, and uniqueness has brought hope to everyone that she meets. Her love and enthusiasm for life is not only felt but seen by her actions and willingness to listen and encourage.Beth is often one of the first to the meeting as she helps with set up and prepares to greet each individual coming to Circles. She also arrives early to our events and helps pull the event together. Whether a staff, participant, or visitor, they feel her love and true concern for them as not only a member of our Circles family but as a person.

Our meetings often start with Beth having a hug for everyone and a name tag as she works to unify our meetings. During the meeting, her smile of encouragement to all participants and kind words encourage and support us during vulnerable moments, bringing a feeling of safety. Our chapter, staff, and participants are all better off due to her contribution to our Circles family.”

 


Outstanding Circle Leaders:

Autumn Hendrickson of Circles Utah Valley

Our first outstanding Circle Leader is a single mother of three who, in just four years, raised her income 540%. Hendrickson gives credit to her Circles Allies who had confidence in her and helped with her own confidence. She now plans to buy a home! Congratulations on your success Autumn and Circles Utah Valley. Click here for the full article.

Jess and Cameron Lyman of Circles Davis County, Utah

Our second outstanding Circle Leader actually goes to a couple who joined Circles in December of 2018, got connected with the Small Business Development Center, and began their dream of operating a food truck. With the help of Circles Davis County, Utah and especially Lamont, Circle Leaders Jess and Cameron Lyman became a great hit with their food truck. They now earn in one event what they used to earn in a week. Congratulations to Jess and Cameron Lyman and Circles Davis County Utah.

 

The Cliff Effect: Policy Recommendations for Advocates, Leaders, and Stakeholders

This report integrates research by Circles USA concerning the Cliff Effect, data from Michigan households utilizing public support, and three hypothetical family cases to develop both general and program-specific policy recommendations. These policy recommendations aim to mitigate the impact of the Cliff Effect on families receiving public assistance as they transition to economic self-sufficiency. The report focuses on the Cliff Effect from Michigan’s Family Independence Program (FIP), Food Assistance Program (FAP), and Child Development and Care Program (CDC). Policy-level recommendations focus on bringing awareness to key stakeholders (public officials, community leaders, and Michigan employers) about the impact of the Cliff Effect on families seeking economic self-sufficiency, development of community assistance programs to help families avoid cliffs, and the development of employment training programs to help displaced workers in Michigan.

Based on the most recent Census reports, the poverty rate in Michigan is 16.3%. The majority of those affected are single-parent (typically female-headed) households with one or more children.37 An estimated 23% of Michigan’s children current live in poverty, defined as less than 100% of FPLs.36 These numbers do not include an additional 25% of Michigan households who are considered “Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE).” As a result, the Cliff Effect experienced by families moving off CDC benefits may be the highest priority for Michigan policy makers to address. Specific recommendations for Michigan’s CDC program include:

1. Extension of the program, at some level of benefit, to families with household incomes between 130% and at least 250% of FPLs.

2. Development of a graduated exit ramp, where the decrease in received subsidy is proportional to the amount the family’s earned income exceeds the exit criteria.

3. Development of CDC reimbursement rates categories that reflect the market rates for highly-rated daycare providers, reducing balance billing payments (the financial remainder which is passed on to parents) for families who are seeking quality care for their children.

Read More…

What is Circles USA’s Response to Potential Food Stamps Cut?

The Trump administration has proposed a new rule for the Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which could potentially eliminate eligibility for three million families. Circles USA’s Founder Scott Miller wrote this response. The administration is collecting feedback through this Monday, September 23; instructions for commenting can be found here. Our appreciation goes to the Circles Washtenaw Big View Team for their inspiring civic-engagement efforts.

The concept of mutual responsibility has always guided our poverty-reduction work at Circles USA. We inspire and equip individuals to take control of their lives and do whatever they can to become economically stable, no matter the external conditions. Likewise, we advise government and community-based program leaders to take responsibility for adding value to these individual efforts by building coherent systems to support and reward all those seeking economic stability.

We currently have a poverty management system that is not accountable to reducing poverty rates. (At best, it keeps people experiencing poverty safe.) While it is tempting to cut benefits to reduce a perceived “dependency,” this alone will not reduce poverty in our nation. We first need a poverty reduction system that is designed to support people out of poverty. Second, we need this new system to converge with the emerging economy, not an outdated notion of job creation. If we don’t generate enough quality jobs to overcome rapid changes in the use of automation, artificial intelligence, and global outsourcing, then we must create new jobs and reimagine the social safety net so that everyone has enough money to thrive.

Before we make cuts in our safety net, let’s first transform our programs to support people all of the way out of poverty and into economic stability. Let’s address the “Cliff Effect” that reduces benefits for basic needs faster than people can replace them with new earned income. Let’s make sure our local, state, and national economic-development programs are generating a robust economy that provides enough jobs, so people don’t need as much work-subsidy programs like food stamps. Once we have all these in place, we are better positioned to assess whether or not it is time to reduce programs like food stamps.

Featured Speakers Announced for Circles USA Leadership Conference 2019

3 Powerful Women Ready to Share their Vision with the Network

Dr. MarYam Hamedani
Tuesday’s Featured Speaker
MarYam Hamedani, Ph.D., is Managing Director and Senior Research Scientist at Stanford SPARQ. SPARQ (Social Psychological Answers to Real-World Questions ) is a “do tank” that partners with industry leaders to tackle disparities and inspire culture change in criminal justice, economic mobility, education, and health using insights from behavioral science.
At SPARQ, Dr. Hamedani studies and puts into practice strategies to help people live, work, and thrive in today’s increasingly diverse and divided world. She works on improving police-community relations, promoting racial literacy, educating people about social differences, and designing empowering schools and programs for underrepresented students.
The former Associate Director of Stanford’s Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity (CCSRE) and the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education (SCOPE), Dr. Hamedani is also a Stanford Ph.D. alum in psychology. Her work has been published in leading journals such as  Psychological Science, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin,  and  Perspectives on Psychological Science,  and has been covered by national media outlets like  National Public Radio, The New York Times, ABC News, The Boston Globe, The Atlantic,  and  The Huffington Post.

Lisa Marsh Ryerson
Wednesday’s Featured Speaker
Lisa Marsh Ryerson is president of AARP Foundation, the charitable affiliate of AARP.
A bold, disciplined and collaborative leader, she sets the Foundation’s strategic direction and steers its efforts to realize an audacious vision: a country free of poverty, where no older person feels vulnerable.
Since she took the helm, AARP Foundation has developed pioneering initiatives, explored new avenues for collaboration, and secured unprecedented funding to support programs and services that truly change lives.
Ms. Ryerson has spearheaded innovative partnerships with other organizations to create and advance effective solutions that help vulnerable older adults increase their economic opportunity and social connectedness. Before joining AARP Foundation, Ms. Ryerson served as the president and CEO of Wells College in Aurora, N.Y.

Diana Dollar
Thursday’s Featured Speaker
Driven by a deep, life-long commitment to fairness and justice, Diana came into her role as the founding Executive Director of The Prosperity Agenda dedicated to transforming big, complex systems in order to drive meaningful, sustainable change.
“In large systems, it’s easy to inadvertently optimize for cost, number of people served, simplicity, or throughput, but not to focus on what really matters: the experience of the individuals and families who are impacted by poverty and have no reasonable way out.”
With more than 20 years of leadership experience in human, workforce, and economic development systems, Diana now focuses her attention on transforming traditional approaches to poverty by leading The Prosperity Agenda toward  solutions that honor the lived experiences of families impacted by poverty and which give families the equity, dignity, security, and choice they deserve.

Lives Transformed — PART 4

Here’s the last of a four-part series focusing on Circle Leaders who have changed their lives with Circles.

“There’s so much support. It’s a ‘push’ support. They want to see you succeed. They want to see you reach your goals.” —DeShawn Daniels, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, the second of four kids. And while we grew up in subsidized housing, I didn’t notice we were living in poverty— my mom never showed the struggle. She always had a job. We had a supportive stepdad who was a constant presence in our lives. And we went on outings as a family. I was practically a teenager before I learned we received food stamps.

I completed high school and the U.S. Army Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC). At 19, I received rental assistance, moved out, and started working full-time at a childcare center earning $6.25 per hour. I had a boyfriend and was shocked when he became physically violent. I had never experienced anything like that growing up. Threats from him forced me to move back home.

Still working, I ventured out on my own again at age 24. I got an apartment and a new boyfriend. At age 25, I had a baby girl. When my daughter turned 2, I started college for nursing, but I couldn’t make it work between my job, going to school, studying, and getting her to and from daycare each day. After two semesters, I dropped out but later completed a certified nursing assistant (CNA) program, which helped me get a job at an adult rehab center.

During the next 10 years, I had two sons and continued to work full-time, supporting three kids. I was earning too much money to receive food stamps but was unable to save any money. I had no hope of owning a home until I was invited to a homeownership class, a class that led to Circles.

About five years ago, many families living in the East Liberty neighborhood were displaced and moved into Section 8 housing to make room for a new development. I was one of six people eligible for a program that helps single moms become homeowners. I was in this program when Circles first began in Pittsburgh, and my initial reaction to Circles was no, I didn’t need more meetings. But Circles included childcare and a meal each week, so I agreed to attend.

At the first Circles meeting, I wanted to leave because it seemed the others in my class were struggling with issues much worse than mine. I didn’t talk during the first two meetings, but by the third or fourth meeting, I started opening up. Before we met our Allies, we had 12 weeks of training where we shared our stories and learned about all the barriers that keep people in poverty.

We were nervous the day we met our Allies. I thought, “What can they possibly do for me? These people were born into money. How are we supposed to make this work?” Then I realized they were just as nervous as we were.

I discovered my Allies truly cared about me so I kept going back. I was matched with Quianna, who knew all about homeownership because she had just purchased her first home, and Sarah, who is a budgeting queen and knows a lot of people.

The biggest challenge for me was saving money. I was wasting money eating out and buying little, unnecessary things. I didn’t realize it until I wrote it down. They make you write it all down. It was hard to get a paycheck and put the money away. But I was 42 and had no savings. I didn’t have student loans, but I did have some credit card debt. I didn’t know it was hurting me until I saw my credit score.

When the second Circles group started, I stayed. The program got better with each session. I’m now in the fifth class, and Circles is thriving here. Much of the material I know, but I still need all that support. Our Circles has been so much fun we even have a relay team for the Pittsburgh Marathon. I never would have tried this on my own. There’s so much support. It’s a “push” support. They want to see you succeed. They want to see you reach your goals.

At the end of 2018, I purchased a home of my own. My sons’ father is very involved with all three of my kids, who are now 19, 9 and 5. My daughter is a freshman at Seton Hall University. I’m now in charge of scheduling and payroll at the rehab center, and I earn $18.23 per hour. My credit score is 740. I still get excited when I check my credit score every two weeks. It’s a great feeling.

© 2019

Lives Transformed — PART 3

Here’s the third of a four-part series focusing on Circle Leaders who have changed their lives with Circles.

“I never thought I’d see the day when I’d be clean for seven years. But my life now is so worth it.” —Hiedi Johnson, Clearfield, Utah


I grew up in poverty in Ogden, Utah. I was one of six kids. My dad worked in machine maintenance. My mom worked at a gas station and later as a wait­ress. Still, we lived on food stamps in a house beyond repair. The kitchen didn’t have much of a ceiling; we had to bring out buckets when it rained.

At 16, I left home, dropped out of school because I was pregnant, and moved in with my boyfriend. I tried methamphetamines as a way of losing weight after my pregnancy and became addicted. I had four children within four years, and at different times, I lost custody of all of them.

I went back to school and earned my high school diploma at age 22. When the relationship with my boyfriend ended, I moved back home with my par­ents and tried to start over. But when I got together with some old friends, I started using meth again. I ended up marrying someone who supplied me with the drug. But it didn’t last as I was trying to stop us­ing and trying to regain custody of my youngest.

My drug addiction ended when I met James in the fall of 2010. James said, “Meth or me?” and I chose him. We were married the following summer.

James grew up all over the country. His mom worked for the government, and his dad and the stepfathers who followed all worked in the military. Despite being born with two club feet, James always had a job after high school, working as an electrician or a carpenter in residential construction. He was married for awhile and had two sons. As an adult, he lived in Virginia, New Jersey, and Georgia before moving here to Utah.

James and I had been married for a couple of years, and he had a good job working as a robot technician when the pain in his ankles grew so un­bearable he could hardly walk. An orthopedic sur­geon found the cartilage in both ankles was nearly gone, and surgery was required. James lost his job because it took two years to recover from the surger­ies. He found a part-time, minimum-wage job, but it wasn’t enough to cover the bills.

For two years, we were living paycheck to pay­check. We assumed we were stuck in poverty. We put carpet over the holes in the floor of our trailer, and each month we had to choose a different bill to pay because we couldn’t afford all of them. The medical bills piled up.

A friend at church told me about a brand new pro­gram he was involved with called Circles, and I figured it couldn’t hurt. I knew that if we went to Circles, we’d at least get a hot meal each week.

The more James and I went to Circles, the more we learned. Speakers came in and talked about re­pairing credit. Our classmates became our friends. And James and I were assigned an Ally named Jason, who is the most wonderful person.

Jason helped us fix our credit, which had been de­stroyed by debt from medical bills, a vehicle that was repossessed, and outstanding utility payments.

What seemed impossible was possible. James and I set goals, such as putting aside money for a home, a car, and emergency savings.

During this time, James got a great job as a ma­chine operator making parts for aircrafts at an aero­space corporation. We were in Circles for about two years when we officially crossed over the poverty line, earning 200% of the Federal Poverty Level Guide­lines. While this marked our graduation from Circles, we were asked to return as volunteer Allies. We want to serve others the way Jason had served us. James can’t attend the Circles meetings because he works a second shift, but I go and plan to continue volunteer­ing as long as Circles is here.

We purchased our first home this year, and my husband got the car he’s been dreaming about: a tur­bocharged Nissan Altima.

I never thought I’d see the day when I’d be clean for seven years. But my life now is so worth it. I’m mar­ried to my best friend. My youngest, who is 16, lives with us. And I get to raise my son’s 1-year-old son.

© 2019

Lives Transformed — PART 2

Meet the second of four Circle Leaders who have changed their lives with Circles.

“I’m very happy with my life. It’s a confidence boost to do what many women can’t do: I got my life together without a man.”

—Lola Flores, Newaygo, Michigan


The reason I didn’t grow up in poverty was that my mom had a husband with a good job. But my mom struggled with alcohol, and sometimes when she wasn’t around, her boyfriend would abuse me. This went on for years, and I was 11 before I fully understood what was happening and spoke out. When I did, he went to prison, and we lost everything. At age 12, I tried to commit suicide twice and was hospitalized both times.

Desperate for attention, I ended up partying in high school. It felt like my life was a tornado, and I didn’t know how to stop it. I became pregnant just before I turned 17 and ended up dropping out of school. It was my senior year.

At 18, I moved to Grand Rapids hoping to start a new life with my baby girl. I lived with my cousin, watching her kids while she worked. I hated men because of the abuse I had endured as a child, and yet I felt like I needed a man in my life in order to feel loved. Babysitting each day, I felt like I was missing out on life so I started going out with friends. I began a relationship with a new guy, moved in with him, and became pregnant.

I was 19 when my son was born, and I struggled with postpartum depression. My relationship with my son’s father ended, and I began a 5-year period of working part-time but never having stable housing. The kids and I moved from my mom’s house to a boyfriend’s house, to a boyfriend’s mom’s house to my sister’s house.

I moved in with a new boyfriend after getting pregnant once again, but unfortunately, this relation-ship was abusive. He would physically hurt me, and I was unkind with the words I used. I feared my kids would be injured, so we’d leave only to try again later. All I ever wanted was a happy family, but the cycle of abuse, apology, and forgiveness kept repeating. My life was a mess.

I earned money working for a Realtor, cleaning houses after people had been evicted. I also helped my mom clean houses and office buildings. My brother got me a job planting onions and then sorting and bagging onions. I kept working but never earned enough to have my own apartment.

Eventually, my aunt took us in. When I was filling out an application for free Christmas toys for my kids, there was a flyer for Circles. Hearing it was an 18-month program scared me, but my aunt encouraged me and pointed out that the Circles meetings included dinner and childcare. At first, I would attend but sit alone. Then I warmed up to it.

My aunt was my ally, and Circles gave me more “Allies,” who, like my aunt, were positive and offered different perspectives. Circles taught me how to speak up for myself and how to ask for a raise. I also learned how to process my thoughts. When my thoughts get out of control, I write them out in the form of goals, and it removes the stress.

It was tough and embarrassing to talk about my past. Now I talk about my life with tears, yes, but with the thought of “thank God I’m not that person anymore.” I’ve gained parenting skills. I know how to budget. My kids are only 11, 9 and 4, but I’m already teaching them about credit.

I’ve also learned how to set goals. I started with short-term goals, such as saving $20 a week, and achieving my short-term goals put me in the mood to set long-term goals. My long-term goals included paying off some debt to fix my credit score, getting my own place for me and my kids where I could pay my own bills, keeping insurance on my car, and getting ready for home-ownership. I’ve accomplished all of these goals, and in early 2019, I plan to start the process of purchasing my own home.

I’m now 28 and work full-time for a financial services company in the accounting department. I earn about $24,000 per year after taxes, so I’m still eligible for food stamps and healthcare. But I pay for rent and childcare. I’ve been in Circles for 18 months, and I plan to stay in it a bit longer. I’m very happy with my life. It’s a confidence boost to do what many women can’t do: I got my life together without a man.

© 2019

Lives Transformed — PART 1

Over the next few months, meet four Circle Leaders who have changed their lives with Circles.


“I was doing everything I knew to get out of poverty. But to my shock, it became apparent that I really knew very little about any other economic class other than my own.”

—Rebecca Lewis-Pankratz, McPherson KS


I was raised in poverty, and at age 16, I dropped out of high school and left home with a boyfriend. That began a 13-year period of drugs, alcohol, and an abusive relationship. We moved from Kansas to Texas to Tennessee to Arkansas to Oklahoma.

At age 29, I finally left the boyfriend who was then my husband. Soon after I left, I realized I was pregnant. Thinking of my newborn son and his future, I started college and a job.

I was still struggling with alcohol on and off and with relationships that didn’t last. I had another son and then another. Financial aid helped with tuition, but to make ends meet, I worked as a janitor at my college and as an art instructor for kids. In 2010 when my financial aid ran out, I took a third job as a bartender to cover my final years of tuition.

During that time, I stopped by a church that I frequented to receive free diapers. I told the kind lady who handed out the diapers how much those diapers meant to me and how someday I was going to finish school, claim a better life for my kids, and return to give back. She pointed to a flyer about a class called Circles that helps people get out of poverty.

I thought, “What are these people going to teach me about poverty that I don’t already know?” Then I thought, “I’ve gotten so many diapers from this lady that I better sign up!” So I did.

I was doing everything I knew to get out of poverty. But to my shock, it became apparent that I really knew very little about any other economic class other than my own. I learned I was a master at putting out fires but inept as to how to keep them from igniting.

In 2011, I entered Circles scared, broken, exhausted, and suspicious of the program. But I left that first night with hope and was able to admit how alone and vulnerable I had been all those years.

When I started Circles, my boys were 9, 5, and 2, and we lived in a trailer with broken windows, holes in the floor, and a faulty water heater. I owned a car, but it was always breaking down. I was at work or at school five or six nights each week, which meant dragging my kids home late in the evening from the babysitter. My school-aged kids struggled with behavior issues. And, I felt like a failure as a mother.

Twelve weeks later, I graduated from Circles training. I committed to attend weekly meetings for 18 months. Classmates and I were matched with middle-class “Allies,” who became our friends. Everything in my life started falling into place. My name came up for a housing voucher, and we left the trailer park. A friend helped me find a dependable car. And that year, 2012, I became the first person in my family to graduate from college.

I received a paid, part-time position helping with Circles, and the church that housed our Circles office asked me to be the outreach coordinator for the diaper and food ministry. The first time I went to Walmart and filled up the cart with diapers, I could not stop the tears from streaming down my face. I had become the kind lady who helps moms like me.

I set long-term goals with my Allies. I wanted to get my teeth fixed. Thirteen appointments and $1,700 later, I reached that goal. I wanted out of poverty. In early 2014, I was hired as a full-time Circles coach. I was working three jobs at the time, but with this new position, I was finally making enough to officially leave poverty. My third goal was to buy a home. Looking back, I estimated that I had moved 71 times.

In 2016, I remarried. In 2017, I landed a great job directing student services and poverty issues at a large educational consulting company. Today, my boys are 15, 12, and 9. Our household income is $120,000 per year. And, yes, we own a home. Sometimes I’ll hear a little voice in my head that says, “Rebecca, you’re not poor anymore.” It’s almost unbelievable.

© 2019

AARP Well-Being Champion, Scott Miller

End PovertyI am honored to be named by the AARP Public Policy Institute, along with 9 other community leaders (all of whom are 50+), as an AARP Well-Being Champion. AARP is showcasing the impact Circles USA  has had in building a “Culture of Health” in America’s communities. Today, 10/25/18, AARP launched the Website and social media (Twitter & Facebook) campaigns promoting the Circles model which fosters well-being and economic stability. To learn more, read the AARP booklet outlining the programs and work of the 10 champions of change in 2018. 

 

Video:

March 2017 Impact Report

This report measures our success in key strategic areas related to achieving a major reduction in poverty. The data is collected from Chapters across North America America and is compiled by Circles USA.

THERE ARE FOUR VARIABLES THAT INFLUENCE THE RESULTS OF CIRCLES, INCLUDING:

1. The level of employability of Circle Leaders CUSA tracks whether people are in situational poverty or have been raised in poverty. We also note whether they are entering an educational or career track. The level of work experience usually determines the level of soft skills people possess prior to Circles that assists them in earning more income.

2. Availability of Jobs The availability of good-paying jobs in a community dictates how easy it is for people to find economically secure jobs. The trends of automation, globalization and artificial intelligence are rapidly changing the economy. People must have higher-level skills to be qualified for jobs that provide enough income to reach at least 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines and become economically stable. Circles provide long-term support so that people can achieve the education and training necessary to secure good jobs.

3. The impact of the Cliff Effect The most challenging Cliff Effects are in childcare and healthcare insurance. For many, there is a real hardship from shifting from stable benefits to unstable earned income. This is especially true if that income does not cover all the expenses the benefits covered. People raised with food stamps, housing assistance vouchers, and/or TANF subsidies often find it psychologically difficult to exchange secured benefits for new earned income opportunities. If they cannot predict changes, it becomes a potential crisis to accept more earned income. Therefore, Circles USA created its own online Cliff Effect Planning Tool.

4. Social Capital Circles boosts the social capital of each participant to have more peer relationships as well as “Allies” who provide new networks of connections. Circles is co-designed with a variety of education, employment, and human services programs to provide volunteer-driven community supports that produce better results.

DATA REGARDING SPECIFIC CHAPTERS OR COMMUNITIES IS AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST.