For those of you who missed our Bellevue City Hall Tour, I wanted to share what we learned because I think the info is really important for everyone!
First off, thanks so much to Kevin Henry for organizing this day for us. Kevin is the City of Bellevue's Diversity Outreach Coordinator. He shared many great pieces of information with us. Here are a few things we learned:
1) City Hall has 2 excellent brochure walls with all sorts of helpful information about resources, exhibits, and other offerings throughout Bellevue. All brochures are free and many are translated into different languages.
2) If you have a concern that you would like the City Council to address, you can contact them by email or attend a City Council Meeting. Visit the City of Bellevue Website for more information. Click on the links below:
Request Assistance or Report Issues
City of Bellevue: http://www.ci.bellevue.wa.us/
(For those of you who do not live in Bellevue, your city will have similar types of resources; just visit the website for your local City Hall.)
3) If you would like to host a cultural event that would be free and open to all, you might be able to use space in City Hall for this event. Find out more by contacting Kevin about what you have in mind. Kevin is a great resource for us!
Kevin Henry's email is: KHenry@Bellevuewa.gov
We were also joined by a very friendly and helpful police officer who answered a lot of our questions. Here are a few of the important points:
1) Keep your home safe by locking all doors and windows whenever you are not at home and while you are sleeping.
2) Be careful when answering the door if there is a strange person who you do not recognize or were not expecting. It's okay to tell the person that you do not open the door for strangers and ask them to please leave.
3) Call 9-1-1 from any phone, anywhere in the U.S., in an emergency situation or call the non-emergency number for the police, which is monitored 24 hours a day. In Bellevue the non-emergency number is: (425) 452-6917.
(If you do not live in Bellevue, you can find your local non-emergency police number by doing a web search.)
4) If you are unsure whether something is an emergency or not, go ahead and call 9-1-1. The person who answers the call will be able to help you and direct you to the proper resource for help.
5) If you get into a car accident, here are the steps you can take:
1) Take a deep breath and don't panic. Stay calm.
2) Check for injuries. Call 9-1-1 if anyone is injured.
3) If the accident is minor, move the car to a safe place, out of traffic.
4) Turn on the hazard lights.
5) Call the police (911) and file an accident report.
6) Exchange information with the other driver:
names, phone number, license plate number, insurance information
6) The police in the U.S. are here to help you and keep you safe. You do not need to fear the police, and if you ever have a complaint about a police officer you can contact the non-emergency number and report your issue.
Finally we were joined by the Volunteer Coordinator for the City of Bellevue, Shelly Shellabarger. She is the most knowledgeable person in Bellevue regarding volunteer opportunities! I know many people have had difficulty finding volunteer positions, and Shelly sounds like the perfect person to help with this issue. She suggests you email her directly with very specific ideas about what you're interested in, and she can connect you with places all around the area that need volunteers.
Shelly's email is: firstname.lastname@example.org
All in all, it was a great morning. Thanks again to all the people who helped make this possible!
Please let us know if you have further questions or concerns, and we can try to find the answers for you.