Rita On The Road Episode 5 - Vasu Pawar, CEO and Founder of Step 2 Step Up; Dr. Karri Brower, Physical Therapist with Live to Ignite; April Grimaldi, Occupational Therapist with Multigenerational Home Modifications; Brea Saine, Development Director with American Heart Association (February 26, 2023)

RITA PARDUE JR.: Broadcasting from the entertainment capital of the world, this is Rita on the Road. I'm your host, Rita Pardue, on 91.5 KUNV, Jazz and More. On today's episode, part one, we're speaking with Vasu Pavar, founder and CEO of Step 2 Step Up. Our guests are Dr. Carrie Brower, physical therapist of Live to Ignite, and April Grimaldi, occupational therapist with multi-generational home modifications. And part three in studio is Bria Sane, development director with the American Heart Association. And now, part one. 91.5 Jazz and more, this is Rita on the Road. And we're here today in the KUNV studios with our guest Vasu Pavar. Thank you for coming in today. Rita, it's really my pleasure to be here. Vasu is the founder and CEO of a non-profit called step2stepup.com. Tell us about the history because I know you are from India. You are a passionate educator. So how did this organization come into being?

I worked as a finance controller for 35 plus years. And I've taken a lot of these companies to a really high financial level as a finance controller. That's what I did for all my life over here in the US. And I felt sorry when I had to lay off some of the employees, maybe because they were not the right fit, or maybe because they didn't really come there as a job that they really liked, but just because they needed a paycheck. So there were times when I had to lay them off, and I used to feel sorry about that. I felt that I should do something when I really retire, I should do something for these people. So I started looking into that, and started looking to all these students who are educated, and yet they don't have a job. I felt bad about that too, and I said, you know, if I can create an organization that will help all of these younger generation kids to sort of get them situated in their own lives to be independent and self-sufficient, they don't have to worry about their jobs. So while they're studying in college and all of it, which is very important to me to have an education, to also teach them how to build their own business so they can be entrepreneurs. So my goal is to make them all entrepreneurs.

For the listener, how can they get involved with what you're doing? Because you have a goal to help all these young people to be self-sufficient, to be young entrepreneurs. So what's the website?

The website is step2stepup.com. We are really putting up such a beautiful program on there, so you'll be thrilled to be a part of our organization. and it's nothing to do with any color or race or any of that stuff. Any child can come and join us and we'll be more than happy to help them. I want our children to use their own brains. Come up with the ideas of a business on your own. I'm not going to tell you to do this business or that. It should come from their own mind. What can I do? Because that's what you want the children to do is spend some time on their own mind and come up with a nice concept instead of trying to follow somebody else's dream. So, I want them to follow their own dreams, use their minds in something that they can create for themselves, and that's my concept.

Exactly. Well, you have a big event coming up on March 11th. It's called the Tribute to 24 Successful Women in the U.S. I am honored because when I received your email that you've selected me to be one of these 24 women, I am thrilled and honored. But the other aspect that really touches my heart is that you have identified 24 young student entrepreneurs. So tell our listeners what will be happening with my role and the other 23 women that you've identified and these 24 young student entrepreneurs. What will we be all doing together?

In the nation, you will see so many women doing so many things. And we never think of recognizing somebody else. We are always so focused on doing something for ourselves. And I did the same, you know. Professionally, I wanted to be right on top. I did this and I did that. And then I started realizing that who is going to honor these women? You know, so I took upon myself to honor these women, and the focus on that is also our children. So if you have these powerful women that we bring together, I have 24 from 2021, and now I have 24 more coming this year. We successful women put our minds together, we'll be the only ones who can change the world for the next generation. And I thought we can be the biggest help for them. How can we cater to their needs? They could be of different professions. So if you have women of different professions and powerful women that too, I think we'll be the only ones who can give them the best guidance that day. So on the day of the event, of course, it's like a pageant. I honor you in a very most respectable way I can. I want you to feel special that day. You're also gonna be connected with 24 younger generation kids who are just students from school. And what we have done is we have given them $100 each of them and say, how can you come up with a business with how can you double this money or how can you multiply this amount of money that I've given you? So I want you to use your brains. And so on that day, all of these these kids will become 24 kids will be coming there, students. And we will be connecting you based upon what you have chosen as your 24 spokes out of the Ashoka Chakra that I believe in, you know, that's my symbol and that's why I have 24 women and 24 children Because it has the principles of life in it and it meant a lot to me So we'll say for example, you have picked prosperity as one of your principles We'll find a kid who has also picked prosperity We'll connect you with him and you have to guide him and tell him what will be the best thing you can do with his business Your mission according to you how he can be successful

Well, I was really intrigued by that and actually the 24 spokes that you're referencing, I felt for me it was service because my entire adult life I've been involved with PTA and Little League Baseball, Team Mom, all these different things that I've done over the years. But then as a journalist, I found that I was creating awareness and that's what I felt like my it is it spoke to me and that's why I wanted to share what you're doing with these young entrepreneurs and the women that you've identified that you're going to match us up with these students but how how very cool now where will this event be and are

you offering tickets that people can purchase to come so where will the event be first of all? It is a ticketed event. It's $50 a person. I Usually don't like to take an ambience like a hall or something in a in some maybe, you know Hotel or something like that. I like natural beauty. So always do it in somebody's beautiful backyard So this is a bit of a mansion of my friend who owns this home and she has offered me a home and I'm trying to do it because the pictures come out so beautiful in an ambience like that and we enjoy ourselves and this COVID thing I thought this is the best thing we have fresh air that we are breathing we don't have to worry about those things either and I did that two years ago and

I'm doing the same thing again this year too. Oh I love it and this will be a ticketed event. Let's give out a phone number that people if you're interested in coming and getting involved with an organization that is nurturing to young people to help them learn to be entrepreneurs. So that number would be 760-220-6004 or you can look up more information on the website at step2stepup.com. What other things as we're our time is getting away from us. So just to kind of summarize everything anything you would like to add to our conversation.

You know, I also realized when I did my last event to 2021 last year did it to those in 2020 in Delhi helping these women were battered. Or maybe they were, you know, and so I had to help them. And not, it was something which they didn't really want to do, but they were forced to into prostitution and things like that. So I did something there that 2022. The, when we bring powerful women together, 24 women together, what happens is that you learn something from each other as well. I noticed that none of these 24 women knew each other. So when you connect with each other, some of them say, oh, I would love an emcee and you would be my best emcee or you could promote this and you could. So we can help each other in that manner, too.

Yes. Networking is an important skill to learn. And so I'm glad that you're reinforcing that for the young entrepreneurs to learn about doing that. Yes. Mm hmm. Well, once again, if you would like to get involved with an organization that focuses on women's knowledge and then to help young student entrepreneurs, step2stepup.com is the website. The phone number is 760-220-6004. And Vasu Pavar, thank you so much for joining us today and sharing about this wonderful organization.

It's really my greatest pleasure because because of your network here that I will be able to spread this word around as many people as I can. So that's the best thing for us all of us.

Thank you. That was Vasu Pavar, founder and CEO of Step2StepUp. And now, part two. 91.5 Jazz and More, this is Rita on the Road and we're in the KUNV studio with our two special guests. I have Dr. Kari Brower, who is a physical therapist. Welcome, Kari. Thank you. And then also joining us is April Grimaldi, who is an occupational therapist. I'm so glad you all could make it. Hi. Thank you well, we all connected a while back over at the UNLV track and the cool thing about Carrie and April you are involved with a walking group called heart and soul

So tell us a little bit about heart and soul is for the senior or older generational population and it is where they can come out and walk and enjoy company, socialize and get their exercise moving and grooving. We practice over at the Henderson Multi-Generational Center and we meet every Thursday morning at 830. We just go out, we have a great time. There's anywhere from 10 to 15 of us and we move, groove, and get our exercise in to have fun.

Well, I had a great time and getting to meet you all. So let's offer how people can connect with you all. So that would be the website or Facebook.

Right. They can join us on the Facebook Heart and Soul Walking Group. And like Carrie said, we meet every Thursday at 830 until about 930 at Henderson

Multi-generational Center in Green Valley. And just so you know, Heart and Soul, soul is SOLE, so Heart and Soul Walking Group on Facebook. Before we we started our interview, April, you mentioned something about your connection to UNLV. Yes, I am an alumni from UNLV and graduated in 2005 with a degree in Kinesiological Sciences. Oh fantastic, and what if each of you could share with our listeners, what got you involved in this type of career choices? So, Carrie. Sure,

so I'm a physical therapist and I've always been involved in exercise and wellness throughout my whole life. I've enjoyed it tremendously, but I've also enjoyed the medical portion of things as well. So those two just kind of went hand in hand and physical therapy meets the needs of both of those for me. And I've always been drawn to the older population. I think that there's a big need out there to serve this population. And so I luckily was able to follow my dreams and go into physical therapy and work with the population that makes me the happiest to work with. And it's just been wonderful.

Well, I'm so glad that you did because I've been one that enjoys exercising and dancing and all of that all my life. And now I'm in that category you're describing. And that's okay because I'm glad that I'm at this stage of my life and career, I attribute that to being mindful of my diet and exercise. It all plays together. You have a company as well. What is the name of your company that you're involved with?

I do. I own Live to Ignite Physical Therapy and Wellness. You can reach me at livetoignite.com. And I do mobile physical therapy for the senior population. So I travel around to their homes and provide services in their homes, whether it be physical therapy or wellness services. And we plan out their one-hour sessions to meet their needs, to live comfortably and age wonderfully.

And it makes a difference, folks. It truly does. You know, we take care of ourselves. And when you physically feel good, it also helps you to mentally stay alert and working together with what you're going to eat and diet and the whole combination, the whole combo plate, so to speak, that's how we have a good life. And that's what it's about. That's right.

Well, April, what drew you into this field? My stepdad was a physical therapist and so back in the day you could take your kids to work and I got to go to work with him. Now you can't do that, it's against TIPA. So I got to experience it and I've wanted to be a therapist since I was a little girl. Like all my yearbooks you can see that every year it's I want to be a therapist, I want to be a therapist. So that's how I got into it and came here to UNLV, graduated from here, and then I went on to Toro University and got my degree in occupational therapy. So I'm an occupational therapist for seniors as well, and I own my own business as well, multi-generational home modifications, and I help the seniors age in place and be as active and independent as they can be, providing occupational therapy services.

That's wonderful. You had put Heart and Soul Walking Group and for our listeners, if you're into Facebook, you're going to want to check this group out because they're very active. That's how I connected with them over at the UNLV track. Well, you have something coming up that really intrigued me and I saw your flyer about something called a Memory Cafe and that's going to open up March 6th. So tell our listeners about what they can expect to find at the Memory Cafe. I don't know who is going to answer this. I guess it's going to be Carrie, Dr. Brower. What's going to happen at the Memory Cafe?

Sure. So, the Memory Cafe, our Memory Cafe is Memory Lane, so Memory Lane Cafe, and it's at the Henderson Multigenerational Center in Henderson, Nevada. This cafe, it's not a cafe in your traditional sense. It's actually a meetup group. And it's a meetup group for individuals and their caregivers, individuals that have been diagnosed with some sort of dementia, whether it be mild cognitive impairment, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Lewy body, you name it. There's a number of them out there. But it's a place for those individuals to go and meet up and be around individuals who are of similar situation to them. So that way they can feel comfortable in being themselves and they can enjoy the other company and the caregivers can learn from each other as to what everyone is going through.

It's a support.

It is.

To offer the support. Well, we should give the address for the Multi-General Recreation Center.

250 South Green Valley Parkway in Henderson, Nevada 89012 and it's called the Henderson Multi-Generational Center.

Well you are busy ladies because I understand there's another event coming up and this is a big one. It's a free senior health fair and beyond. So who wants to share about that one? I'm looking at both of you like, okay, all right, April.

I'll start. You're it.

The health fair is for seniors, and again, Carrie and I have a huge goal of keeping our seniors active and independent. So the fair is to let people know about smaller companies that are out there that will help them age in place and be safe and independent. Multiple vendors will be there. We have 30 plus vendors. We're going to have live entertainment. So come out and join us on May 12th from 10 to 1.

And again, it's at Henderson Multigenerational Center in Green Valley, and we look forward to seeing you there.


Well, you were saying about the different vendors and that. So what kind of activities will the seniors be doing that day? Dance, move, walk?

Well, we will have some live entertainment. We have a gentleman who's going to be doing ukulele and things like that. So yes, they can definitely listen and move and groove to the music that's going to be playing. We have vendors everywhere from chefs to personal trainers to independent living facilities to Nevada Senior Games. You name it, we're going to have the whole gamut there. And it's going to be a wonderful time. So we definitely hope everyone comes out and enjoys us. And also just to mention, with all of the events that April and I have going on, they are all free to seniors. So that is even better right there.

Well, definitely. This is going to be a real, real blessing and great resource. Well, our time is kind of escaping from us. Anything else you might want to say? Let's give that Facebook group again.

It's Heart and Soul Walking Group. And again, soul is S-O-L-E. You can find us on Facebook and we look forward to seeing everyone.

Thank you. Thank you. Well thank you Dr. Keri Brower and thank you April Grimaldi for coming and joining us on Rita on the Road. Thank you. Thank you.

And now, as promised, Part 3.

91.5 Jazz & More, this is Rita On The Road, and we are in the KUNV studios with our special guest today, Bria Sain, who is the Development Director for the American Heart Association. Welcome back. Hi, Rita. Thanks so much for having me again. Well of course. You know, this is something that's close and dear to me because of my personal experience having a pacemaker now. It's a whole new world out there. And coming up next month, March 9th is a big event, Go Red for Women. So could you share with our listeners, why is that such a big deal?

Yeah, definitely.

Because it is, it is to me and many people.

Yeah, I love that. It's a very important event because number one, it definitely honors women. It's called the Go Red for Women Luncheon. It's important time for women to learn about cardiovascular health and the importance of it and to recognize those signs and symptoms and know how to get help when needed. And it's a fabulous luncheon held at the Four Seasons on March 9th. And like I said, it's just a great way for companies to honor the women in their companies to come together and support cardiovascular health for us.

Let's offer a website, because I know there are a lot of people listening this morning that will be saying, I wanna go, I wanna learn more, I wanna show my support. So how can one get a ticket?

Definitely, so you'll go to this website. It's lvgored.heart.org.

All right. And if you didn't catch it the first time around, we're going to, we're going to share that website several times during this interview. So no worries, get your pencil and paper and jot it down because you don't want to miss this year's event. The Four Seasons is a lovely venue. And I love the way you make it so informational. It's a wonderful, wonderful event. Besides networking with other people, supporting a cause that everybody can get behind, what does the American Heart Association offer?

Yeah, I think, you know, honestly, in working here over the last couple of years, I've just learned so much about cardiovascular health and I think the stigmas that surround it. One of the facts that I recently learned was that more than 44% of women ages 20 and older are living with some form of cardiovascular disease. And when I think about that, you know, that really blows my mind because that's number one a really young age. And so many times people kind of associate age and gender with cardiovascular disease and that really debunks that, right?

So... Well, it's a high percentage. I would not have thought quite that high. But it makes sense because when you think about all the women in the workforce and what we've all been through with the pandemic and then, you know, the burden of sharing of family responsibilities, I mean, life is different now for women. You're so right. So, yes, thank you for bringing that to our awareness. Well, speaking of cardiovascular disease, what are some of the things, what should we be concerned about?

Yeah, I think, you know, if you go online to our American Heart website, you'll see a list of both for men and women, cardiovascular disease and even signs and symptoms of heart attack and stroke can look different for women and men. But we like to leave people with kind of three things. Number one is be aware. So you know, understand what those signs and symptoms are, recognize them and don't hesitate to call 911. The second is to take action. And you know, Rita, you have shared this with me before about getting that annual appointment in and going to the doctor, knowing your blood work, get your checkup. That's so important. And then the third thing is to learn CPR. And you know, that is a very trending topic right now, obviously, from what we've seen, with just the American Football League. And so I think this is a great time to get out there, either get certified, you know, get recertified, if that's what that means, and just know CPR and don't be afraid to do it if you find someone in danger.

Exactly, and I'm glad that you mentioned that because as a spokesperson for the American Heart Association, I, as I mentioned to you before the pandemic, I actually had heart surgery, and I like sharing this with our listeners that typically, you know, we know about if there's a droop in your face or a pain in the arm or something, but mine was not like that at all. Mine was the shortness of breath, and I soon learned after they put an external monitor on my heart that my heart was stopping in my sleep. I mean, who knew? I could have been one of those statistics. I can't encourage people enough to just be mindful of your body. I think most women are. They're in tune with their bodies. They know when something feels a little bit off or something. You get in, get that checkup. I'm so glad you're here today, Priya, because I realized when I checked in my wallet, I used to be, and I say that, used to be certified trained, and my card has expired. So that's going to be on my to-do list to get that renewed and updated and any current information I might need to know. So I can be a blessing to someone if need be.

Yeah, and absolutely. And I think that with that just comes knowing that you still understand the concepts. So again, nothing should ever stop you from performing CPR, even if you aren't certified right now. You know, just again, we have that theme right now for Go Red for Women called Be the Beat. And that really falls along that line of, you know, we say sing that song, Staying Alive, and you just pump and that. And if that's all you know how to do, do that. Like I think people sometimes will freeze in the moment because what a scary thing, right, to watch someone go down. And we also know that women are less likely to receive CPR than men. And so again, if a woman falls, don't hesitate based off her being a woman or a gender or anything along those lines. Get down, start performing CPR, yell for someone else to call 911, and move forward.

Exactly. Well, let's give out the website because this is going to be a great event coming up on March the 9th, Go Red for Women, and it will be at the Four Seasons. four seasons, so where can our listeners find information as well as secure that ticket?

Yep, absolutely.

So the website again is lvgored.heart.org. As always, our time just escapes us, but is there something else, an important piece of

information that you'd like to leave with our listeners this morning? I really, like I said, I think right now for me, working for American Heart, the number one thing is recognizing signs of symptoms, know that they don't all look the same, and then follow up and get that CPR certified. And like encourage your family, one person in your family at minimum should know how to perform CPR, and that can include your children. The other thing I would encourage your listeners to do is to visit American Heart's website. There's a new research called Life's Essential Eight, and it talks about the eight essential things that you can do to help prevent heart disease or further. And one of the main ones that we added for this year was sleep, and to your point, Rita, with women, stress and sleep tend to be two things that really, I think, impact that percentage of us having higher cardiovascular disease. So emphasize sleep, know your Life's Essential Eight, and come visit us at Go Red for Women this year.

Thank you so much. That was Bria Sain, Development Director for the American Heart Association. Thank you.

Thank you, Rita.

Thank you to our guests, Vasu Pavar, Founder and CEO of Step2StepUp, Dr. Kari Brower, Physical Therapist of Live2Ignite, and April Grimaldi, Occupational Therapist with Multigenerational Home Modifications, and Bria Sain, Development Director with the American Heart Association. If you missed any portion of this episode, you can listen to the archived audio at kunv.org on the podcast page. Thank you for listening to Rita on the Road. Thank you for listening to Rita on the Road. I'm Rita Pardue at 91.5 KUNV, jazz and more.

Transcribed with Cockatoo

Rita On The Road Episode 5 - Vasu Pawar, CEO and Founder of Step 2 Step Up; Dr. Karri Brower, Physical Therapist with Live to Ignite; April Grimaldi, Occupational Therapist with Multigenerational Home Modifications; Brea Saine, Development Director with American Heart Association (February 26, 2023)
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