Thursday, January 31, 2019

Promise offers natural family planning training; class set for Feb. 21

by Derrick Vander Waal

SIOUX CENTER, IOWA – Do you desire to learn more about natural family planning to achieve or prevent pregnancy?

Kari Ney, registered nurse for Promise Community
Health Center, presents an overview of the Billings
Ovulation Method to fellow staff. She has been
trained as an instructor in the natural family
planning method and is implementing the
program as a new service at Promise CHC.

Are you seeking alternatives to hormonal or surgical birth control to better fit your budget, to avoid side effects or for medical reasons?

Do other forms of birth control go against your personal or religious beliefs?

If so, Promise Community Health Center of Sioux Center has an effective and easy-to-learn alternative for you.

Kari Ney, a registered nurse for Promise, has become trained as an instructor in the Billings Ovulation Method® of natural family planning and is implementing the program at the health center.

She will offer an introductory class for the Billings Ovulation Method at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21, in community education room at Promise. The class will be open to the first six couples who sign up. The deadline to register is Feb. 17.

To register online, use this form.

Kari Ney will present an introductory class
in the Billings Ovulation Method at Promise
Community Health Center at 7 p.m.
Thursday, Feb. 21. The class is open
to the first six couples who register.

Ney said the Billings Ovulation Method is a scientific method of fertility management that has been used successfully by millions of women around the world to help them become pregnant, postpone pregnancy or to have a better knowledge of their own fertility. She noted some women do not desire hormonal or other forms of birth control due to side effects; during certain periods of their life, such as when they’re breastfeeding; or for religious reasons.

“Here at Promise, we strive to meet the needs of our community,” she said. “We have many families and couples seeking out alternatives to hormonal birth control, and Billings Ovulation Method fills this need. Understanding how fertility works is an vital tool in family planning, but it also is an important component of understanding a woman’s personal health. Fertility awareness-based methods of birth control give couples an alternative that can be just as effective with proper use and instruction.”

Ney noted that many families also are looking for an alternative that better fits their budget.

“Because Promise strives to be a resource for the community and provide accessible care, we felt the Billings Ovulation Method was a good fit,” she said.

Kari Ney, a registered nurse for Promise CHC, has
become trained as an instructor in the Billings
Ovulation Method of natural family planning. She
will present an introductory class on Feb. 21.

During the initial education session on Feb. 21, Ney will introduce couples to the Billings Ovulation Method. This presentation will include all of the information and tools couples will need to get started. If couples choose to continue with the program, they will begin charting their cycle every evening according to the rules taught in the class.

During this process, the Billings program encourages frequent communication and follow-up to promote success. After two weeks of charting independently, Ney will review the charts with them over the phone. A second session with individual chart review will be scheduled at the health center after couples have been charting for a month. Thereafter, Ney will keep in close contact with the couples via phone, text or email every two weeks until they have demonstrated confidence and proficiency in charting. Ney said couples typically have a good understanding of the method within three months.

The cost of the introductory class is $30. The remaining cost of the program after the first session is $150 and is covered fully by most forms of health insurance and Medicaid as preventative care.

Ney said she hopes to offer the program on a quarterly basis.The program will be offered in Spanish in future sessions. Education also is available on an individual basis if preferred.

If organizations are interested in having the introductory class held at their location, contact Promise for details.

Promise Community Health Center of Sioux Center is a Federally Qualified Health Center serving the northwest corner of Iowa. Promise provides medical, prenatal, dental, vision, behavioral health and family planning services. To learn more, visit and watch this video. To read more Promise news, visit

Kari Ney, RN

Kari Ney has been a registered nurse for 19 years, serving the last five serving as part of Promise Community Health Center’s midwifery team. She also serves as the family planning nurse educator at Promise. She is passionate about women’s health and excited to offer this education to our community.  She and her husband, Jake, have four children, Cory, 16; Ethan, 14; Jesse, 12; and Ava, 8.

Therefore, training in the Billings Ovulation Method was a perfect for her.

To become an instructor, Ney attended a 20-hour training from the Billings Ovulation Method Association in St. Cloud, MN. She now is in her practicum period where she will be guided by an expert in the Billings method as she establishes the program at Promise.

“The practicum length is determined by number and complexity of charts to review, but is a great way to start a program because there is expert assistance and guidance at our fingertips,” she said.

What: Billings Ovulation Method introductory session
When: 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 21
Where: Promise Community Health Center; Sioux Center, Iowa
Who: Open to first six couples who register
How: Register online by Feb. 17 at this link
Cost: $30 for introductory class
For more information, contact: Kari Ney at or 712-722-1700.
Website: To learn more about the Billings method, visit

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Dietitian shares tips to address childhood obesity with Promise staff

by Derrick Vander Waal

SIOUX CENTER, IOWA – The statistics are staggering when it comes to childhood obesity.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the percentage of children and adolescents affected by obesity has more than tripled since the 1970s. In 2015-16, 1-in-5 school-age children had obesity, which is defined as having excess body fat.

Registered dietitian Colleen King presents information
about childhood obesity to Promise Community Health
Center clinical staff during a lunch-and-learn session.

That’s about 3 million children.

“That number just freaks me out. That’s a lot of kids,” registered dietitian Colleen King told clinical staff of Promise Community Health Center during a lunch-and-learn session today (Wednesday, Jan. 30.)

King, who is a contracted dietitian for Promise, said a primary cause of obesity is consuming more energy through food and beverages than the body uses for its normal functioning, growth and physical activity. Over time, that leads to weight gain. She said children and adolescents should maintain the right balance of enough food intake to support normal growth and development without going beyond to excess.

The MyPlate approach to portion sizes helps
people visualize how they should eat a
healthy, balanced diet for meals.

Other factors that contribute to obesity include genetics, lower body metabolism, community and neighborhood environmental factors, lack of sleep and lack of physical activity.

In addition to sharing her role as a dietitian and how she can support clinical staff, King shared some tools and tips that she uses with families.

Here is a small sampling:

Portion sizes

King said a big part of eating the right amount of food is visualizing it properly.

She likes to use the MyPlate image of the U.S. Department of Agriculture for a proper, balanced diet with all five food groups. A plate is divided into four sections for protein, vegetables, fruits and grain, with dairy on the side.

“We get different nutrient packages from all the different food groups,” she said. “With some of these fad diets, if you exclude any one of these food groups, you’re going to be minus that nutrition. Portion size is the best practice in getting nice variety. Eating all good, colorful foods is really helpful.”

Registered Dietitian Colleen King likes to
show people how their hands can help
them visualize measurements and
proper portion sizes.

She also likes to help people visualize portion measurements by using their hands or other common items because many people don’t cook with or have measuring utensils handy, such as: a fist = a cup; inside of hand = half a cup; two thumb tips together = tablespoon; one thumb tip = teaspoon; a protein serving = size of deck of cards.

“The more visual we can be the better,” she said. “They can use their own hand as a guide.”

King said many adults tend to have a misconception about what children need for portion sizes.

“Their tummies are the size of their fist. They are pretty tiny,” she said. “So they don’t need a whole lot of food. If they are not going to eat their fruit or vegetable at their meal time because they’re full, then let’s put that into their snack time. Let’s spread out and have five or six eating times per day.”

Promise CHC clinical staff listen to a presentation
from registered dietitian Colleen King regarding
childhood obesity, including helpful tips.

King also likes to promote the 5-2-1-0 approach, which is advocated for by the Iowa Healthiest State Initiative and many other organizations, as a healthy daily lifestyle for children:
  • 5 fruits or vegetables per day;
  • 2 hours or less of screen time per day;
  • 1 hour of physical activity;
  • 0 sugary drinks.

“Spend Smart. Eat Smart.”

King said the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach has great website resources – at – that it promotes as: “Spend Smart. Eat Smart.”

The resources include all types of tips and tools for planning meals, shopping for groceries and cooking foods – as well as recipes and videos.

Promise Community Health Center of Sioux Center is a Federally Qualified Health Center serving the northwest corner of Iowa. Promise provides medical, prenatal, dental, vision, behavioral health and family planning services. To learn more, visit and watch this video. To read more Promise news, visit

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Fiddelkes marvel at another amazing home-birth experience

by Derrick Vander Waal

SPENCER, IOWA – Jonny and Dallas Fiddelke’s second child was born just as their first in the comfort of their own home in Spencer.

Indie Berlin arrived 12:59 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019, weighing 7 pounds and measuring 21 inches. She is the first home-birth baby of the year for the midwifery team of Promise Community Health Center of Sioux Center, IA  – with certified nurse midwife Belinda Lassen attending the birth.

Jonny and Dallas Fiddelke of Spencer, IA, have
appreciated the home-birth experiences of their
two children with the assistance of certified
nurse midwife Belinda Lassen of Promise
Community Health Center of Sioux Center, IA.
They welcomed their baby, Indie Berlin, into
their family on Thursday, Jan. 10.
As she held her baby in her arms for the first time, Dallas marveled at the amazing experience.

“There is nothing I’ve done in my life that is more rewarding than holding our babies immediately after they are born,” she said. “It’s like floating on air and smiling the whole time.”

Belinda also served as the midwife for the Fiddelkes for the birth of their 2-year-old son, Oz. Dallas said the midwifery care throughout the pregnancy was “outstanding” and “smooth and comfortable.” Their appointments felt like a nice chat with someone they’ve know for years – with Belinda being “engaging, attentive and genuinely there” for them.

During her first pregnancy, Dallas said Belinda suggested that she read a couple of birthing books, “Mindful Birthing” and “Hypnobirthing.” She found those resources to be incredibly helpful in preparing for the big day. They were able to set up their home environment to be quiet, peaceful and completely relaxing. That allowed her to focus on her body, her contractions and, ultimately, her breath to allow her to have a peaceful and successful delivery.

Even though the labor was long with her first child, Dallas found it to be the “most incredible experience.”

Oz Fiddelke, 2, is excited to have a younger sister.
Indie Berlin was born on Thursday, Jan. 10, and is
the first home-birth baby of the year for Promise
Community Health Center's midwifery team.

“When Oz was born, it was euphoric,” she said, noting that the experience was everything she had hoped for after all of the focusing, preparing and laboring. “I knew that we wanted to do the same thing for our second baby. We are allowed ample time to labor and ample time to bond in the comfort of our own home with a quiet, peaceful and safe environment. For me, it was the perfect scenario for bringing another healthy, happy baby into this world.”

Indie was born three days after her original due date, but the family wasn’t surprised because their son was born seven days later.

This time, however, the birth experience turned out to be shorter and easier. In fact, Dallas could hardly believe it was over when Indie arrived in the birthing pool.

“She came so beautifully,” Dallas said. “It was amazing. I was holding her almost immediately, and I told my husband, ‘Is it over? I can’t believe she’s here. That was amazing!’”

As for now, the Fiddelkes find Indie to most look like her brother when he was little.

And he absolutely loves being a big brother.

“Oz is beyond excited about his new baby sister,” Dallas said. “He is a gentle and kind-hearted little boy who just wants to kiss her randomly throughout the day. He has adjusted beautifully to having a sibling.”

Indie’s grandparents are Bill and Lynnette Cook of Milford, IA, and Randy and Barb Fiddelke of Manchester, IA.

Promise Community Health Center of Sioux Center is a Federally Qualified Health Center serving the northwest corner of Iowa. Promise provides medical, prenatal, dental, vision, behavioral health and family planning services. To learn more, visit and watch this video. Visit Promise's midwives blog, Wonderfully Made!, at

Dallas Fiddelke said she’s not really sure why they chose Indie as their second baby’s name, other than they like unique names that are easy to pronounce and spell. “Indie sounded free and strong and was both easy to pronounce and spell,” she said. “It also was a beautiful gender neutral name, which worked for our family because we don’t like knowing the gender before our baby is born.”

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Promise CHC refreshes its logo, website with new colors

by Derrick Vander Waal

SIOUX CENTER, IOWAPromise Community Health Center has updated and refreshed its logo and website with new colors.

The logo design has remained the same, but colors now are navy blue and gray instead of blue and teal.



In doing so, Promise also has completely refreshed its website with the new colors.

Check out the new look at:

Note: If the new colors aren't showing up yet, try pressing both "Ctrl" and "F5" simultaneously on your keyboard.

Other changes will be made as time goes on to implement the new logo.

We're excited about the new look!

Promise Community Health Center of Sioux Center is a Federally Qualified Health Center serving the northwest corner of Iowa. Promise provides medical, prenatal, dental, vision, behavioral health and family planning services. To learn more, visit and watch this video. To read more Promise news, visit