First Lady Pool Reports of June 12, 2021

June 12, 2021

Pool Reports by Yamiche Alcindor, PBS NewsHour

Sent: Reports:
June 12, 2021

FLOTUS Pool Note #1

Good afternoon from Newlyn, England.

I’m your pooler for a FLOTUS event today.

Dr. Jill Biden is visiting the Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange, a contemporary art gallery where she is expected to speak to a group of wounded warriors.

The event is expected to begin at 2:15 p.m. BST but Dr. Biden is expected to arrive earlier.

Here is background from the East Wing:

The First Lady will meet with and participate in a discussion with veterans, first responders, and family members of Bude Surf Veterans, a Cornwall-based volunteer organization that provides social support and surfing excursions for veterans, first responders and their families.

They will be sitting at a picnic table overlooking the Mount’s Bay, outside of the Newlyn Art Gallery , a contemporary art gallery located in Newlyn, Penzance, Cornwall, UK.

Pool also spoke with Kathy Hill who is the marketing and communications manager for the gallery. She shares the following information about the gallery:

The gallery was founded in 1895. They have had two venues since 2007. This venue that FLOTUS is visiting dates back to 1895 and is the original Victorian building. It’s funded by a philanthropist for the benefit of people here. Newlyn has been an artistic community for over 100 years and we’re continuing that tradition. They have changing exhibitions and work with schools and children. That’s a big part of what they do, she says.

June 12, 2021

FLOTUS Pool Note #2

Dr. Biden arrived at 1:54 BST.

She is seated at a picnic table with eight other people including a young girl.

She began the meeting by saying, "So I'm Jill." She added, "Nice to meet you."

She later said, "I have my own surfboard. … A long board. … It was white with a big butterfly."

June 12, 2021

FLOTUS Pool Note #3

Pool was moved out of the meeting at 2:05 p.m. BST, which was 11 minutes after Dr. Biden arrived.

During the part of the meeting that pool heard, Dr. Biden spoke to members of Bude Surf Veterans, a Cornwall-based volunteer organization that provides social support and surfing excursions for veterans, first responders and their families.

One member explained that the group started small, reached out to locals and grew from there.

Another member of the group explained that they do trainings for members on surfing and have branched out to working with children with disabilities. They work also with Surf England. The member also said surfing has gotten more veterans and the members "surfing" and "smiling." He also described the group as "life-saving."

Members of the group were wearing light blue, collared shirts that said: "Surf. Grow. Heal. Bude Surf Veterans."

Dr. Biden, during the conversation, remarked that "the water is so calming." She also talked about having attended the Invictus Games, an international sporting event for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women, both serving and veterans.

Dr. Biden also shared that the only two countries she hasn't been to so far are New Zealand and Australia.

Also: The weather is perfect and gorgeous. There is sun, a cool breeze, and water views.

June 12, 2021

FLOTUS Pool Report #4 - Q & A with Dr. Biden and Pool Reporter

This is the last pool report from Dr. Biden's meeting with the Bude Surf Veterans, a Cornwall-based volunteer organization that provides social support and surfing excursions for veterans, first responders and their families.

Dr. Biden exited the Newlyn Art Gallery & The Exchange at about 2:45 p.m. BST.

Pool spoke with her one-on-one for about three minutes. Audio and a transcript of the conversation is here: ><

Also, here is the transcript copied below:

Yamiche Alcindor: I know you that veterans and military families are close to your heart, but tell me a little bit about what you take away from that.

Dr. Jill Biden 0:08
Well, you know when, when my son Beau came back from Iraq, I said to him, "Beau, I'm going to be working with veterans what's, what should I know, what's important?" He said, "Mom, you have to focus on mental health." And so, Michelle and I when we started joining forces, that was, you know, health and well being was one of the pillars of joining forces. And so, after we left being Vice President, you know, we worked all throughout the administration. When we lef,t I kept with our foundation. I kept working with veterans, mental health, the same thing. And then and now as First Lady, I mean, it's my honor. I mean, once again to work with our military families and veterans. And so, I found this organization, and I don't know if you had a chance to meet them but you know they're all dealing with PTSD or anxiety, a lot of mental health issues. But once they found surfing, and they reached out to other veterans who are, you know, need healing and help with their mental health. It's just a way to build back their confidence and to help them deal with life and get on the right track again and so I think the water is so healing, and then this whole sense of community with the veterans with one another. And so it means a lot to me as I mean, my dad was a veteran and of course Beau, and, and I've done a lot with the Invictus Games and walking with the wounded. Joe and I met with them. So there's so many connections and that's why it was important to hear their stories and and hear how they've triumphed.

Yamiche Alcindor 2:01
I know the President has said America is back and talking about diplomacy, I wonder if you could talk about what you see your role as in that overall goal?

Dr. Jill Biden 2:08
You know, I think I'm a partner in this healing process that we're all going through because of the pandemic. And I think that our country has felt so fractured in so many ways. And I think one of the reasons Joe was elected was because of his empathy, and, and his, you know that he knows loss, and so I think that people identified with him. And so I feel that I'm a partner on this journey of healing, bringing together unity, and for our country, but a new look at, look at this it's a global, right, it's a global kind of thing and, and that's what I hear from the other spouses as well. That they've all in this time, you know, they've everybody's had a tough year, but now we're together and we're kind of saying hey how do we go forward, and how do we give people hope getting.

Yamiche Alcindor 3:07
Well, thank you.

June 12, 2021

FLOTUS Pool Report #5 - On countries FLOTUS has visited

One more note on the countries FLOTUS has visited:

FLOTUS and the group were discussing various countries, and *of those countries they were talking about,* the only ones she hadn’t visited were Australia and New Zealand.

Jill Biden, First Lady Pool Reports of June 12, 2021 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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