SAN PATRICIO COUNTY – San Patricio County commissioners issued two proclamations for the month of September at Tuesday’s hearing.

The first proclamation was presented by the San Patricio County Adult Literacy Council.

Within the proclamation, it stated that 22% of residents in the county are lacking basic literacy skills necessary to secure jobs, which in turn affect the economic and community stability within the local area. 

SPC Adult Literacy Council executive director Linda Medellin said the council hopes with the proclamation that it will bring citizen awareness to the program they offer.

Medellin recalled one student from Mathis who was enrolled in the program and had gained custody of her two nephews and had to drop out of school to take care of them. 

“It took her three years to finish getting her high school diploma,” Medellin said. “She went on to go to Coastal Bend College and got an associates degree.

“She started working there. And my understanding is she’s working on getting her bachelor’s degree.

“So we changed not only a life for her, which was really touching. She said all of a sudden she realized that since she got custody of her nephews, she had to be a better example and she was a better example for them.

“We may touch one life that in turn touches another life that enriches our community and makes our community better.”

The second proclamation was presented by SPC Emergency Management and Safety Coordinator Sara Williams.

The proclamation states that the Department of Homeland Security has designated the month of September as National Preparedness Month. It also states that it will create an opportunity for citizens to learn more about getting better prepared for all types of emergencies, from natural disasters to potential terrorist attacks. The proclamation also pays tribute to the community’s first responders. 

After Judge David Krebs finished reading the proclamation aloud, Williams informed the courtroom about two events occurring this month in relation to emergency preparedness. 

“The first one is on Sept. 19 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the County Fairgrounds in Sinton,” Williams said. “We’re going to be having our annual preparedness fair and it’s open to the public.

“It’s a great opportunity for anybody to come and be able to see all the different organizations that support our communities during emergencies and disasters.”

The second event will be a free eight-week community emergency response team class that will start on Sept. 24 at the Oak Ridge Baptist Church in Portland.

“They go over various different subjects each week,” Williams said. “They’ll learn basic first aid, they’ll learn basic search and rescue techniques, fire suppression and several other things along the course.

“It all ends in a fun drill that they get to practice all the things that they’ve learned.

“The goal of that class is  to prepare them to be able to take care of themselves and their neighbors until their first responders can arrive.”