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Sierra Health Foundation Partnerships

San Joaquin Valley Health Fund Round 4 funding to support policy and systems change

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The Center is accepting grant applications for the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund Round 4 funding opportunity. Grants up to $20,000 will support networks and organizations located and working in any of the nine counties of Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, Mariposa, Merced, San Joaquin, Stanislaus and Tulare. We are particularly interested in funding policy and systems change efforts designed to improve outcomes for populations that are disproportionately experiencing poor health.

Proposals are due by Nov. 30 at 1 p.m. Download application materials and access the online application on the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund web page.

The San Joaquin Valley Health Fund strengthens the capacity of communities and organizations to improve health and well-being by advancing programs and policy changes that promote community health and health equity for all, and is supported by 11 state and national funders. Learn more.

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Inaugural San Joaquin Valley Leadership Conference focuses on regional issues and opportunities

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In partnership with the Office of Mayor Michael Tubbs, The Center at Sierra Health Foundation co-hosted the first San Joaquin Valley Leadership Conference in Stockton on Oct. 12, bringing together community leaders and residents to identify policy opportunities to improve health and quality of life outcomes for communities throughout the San Joaquin Valley. Community leaders and elected officials including U.S. Senator Kamala Harris spoke about issues that have particular importance in the Valley, such as immigration, education, land use planning and healthy living environments, as well as their role in addressing these and other issues.

During the conference, we released the report, Kern County: Geography of Inequity and Opportunities for Action, by the UC Davis Center for Regional Change and funded by The California Endowment and Sierra Health Foundation. With findings from this report and our earlier report, San Joaquin Valley: A Region and Its Children Under Stress, funded by W.K. Kellogg Foundation and Sierra Health Foundation, community residents and leaders identified policy opportunities in the Valley.

“All of us—residents, community leaders, elected officials and funders—must work together to address the inequities in the San Joaquin Valley,” said Chet P. Hewitt, President and CEO of Sierra Health Foundation and The Center. “As part of our ongoing partnership with Valley communities and funders, we were excited to host this important day with Senator Kamala Harris and other community leaders to identify strategies that will help make California a golden state for all.”

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Select Committee on the Status of Boys and Men of Color to hold briefings throughout California

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The Assembly Select Committee on the Status of Boys and Men of Color is rolling out a series of legislative briefings across the state over the next few months. The Select Committee is interested in engaging boys and men of color advocates to inform policy issues and identify content expertise that aligns with policy issues being addressed in each hearing. The first, an informational hearing on the City of San Jose’s My Brother’s Keeper strategy and Education Policy Initiative, will take place on Nov. 1 at San Jose City Hall. Others include a focus on Sustainable Programs in Seaside on Nov. 6, Reducing Youth Incarceration in Sylmar on Dec. 6 and Sustainable Programs in Fresno on Dec. 8. Visit the Select Committee web page for member contact information.

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Health Leadership Program launches Class XIV

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Health Leadership Program Class XIV met for their first class module Oct. 4 through 6 at Sierra Health Foundation. This diverse group of nonprofit and public agency leaders has come together to strengthen their leadership skills and form peer networks to advance the work of their organizations in reducing health disparities. The class heard from Chet P. Hewitt, President and CEO of Sierra Health Foundation, who spoke about the foundation’s commitment to health and racial equity.

Learn more on the Health Leadership Program web page.

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Rural north state forum looks at challenges, opportunities to achieve health equity

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The Shasta County Health and Human Services Agency partnered with Sierra Health Foundation and the California Department of Public Health’s Office of Health Equity to host a community forum to gain a better understanding of the health equity challenges facing the rural north. More than 75 community residents, service providers and policymakers attended the Oct. 26 forum, where they discussed opportunities to improve outcomes in early childhood development, education, housing, income security and mental health, with a special focus on suicide prevention.

The day began with a housing tour in Redding and Shasta Lake, as well as a look at potential areas of economic growth for this Northern California region. The tour included a visit to the Woodlands, a 50-unit housing community funded through a private-public partnership that focuses on services for residents living with mental health issues. Most of the residents in the new community had been homeless for years.

The next stop on the tour was a visit at the Local Indians For Education Center in Shasta Lake. Staff shared their work of building the capacity and capabilities of Indigenous community members to succeed through culturally based education programs, services and advocacy to create a better informed and empowered community.

Forum attendees addressed many complex issues, including the region’s disproportionately high rates of suicide, mental health issues and substance abuse. The forum concluded with group discussions and brainstorming on ways the community can better partner with government and the philanthropic community to improve the health of people in the rural north.

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Sacramento residents become community first responders

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More than 35 Sacramento residents received training to become community first responders this month. The Black Child Legacy Campaign, in partnership with the City of Sacramento, The California Endowment and the Urban Peace Institute, hosted the second of three trainings. Community first responders are available seven days a week and serve as the immediate first response when a crisis occurs to provide social, emotional, spiritual and other support services. The next training will take place in November. Please e-mail us for more information.

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Public encouraged to attend Office of Health Equity Advisory Committee meeting

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The California Department of Public Health – Office of Health Equity (OHE) Advisory Committee was created to advance the goals of OHE and is comprised of 26 representatives from state agencies and departments, local health departments, community-based organizations, communities facing inequities and stakeholder communities.

The last OHE Advisory Committee meeting was hosted in Marin City on Sept. 28 and had strong participation of more than 100 community members and leaders. Meeting materials are available on the OHE web site. An article about this meeting was featured in the Marin Independent Journal.

The next OHE Advisory Committee meeting will be held on Dec. 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Sierra Health Foundation, 1331 Garden Highway in Sacramento. The public is strongly encouraged to participate in this meeting. If you intend to do so and/or would like to receive updates, e-mail OHE with “Advisory Committee” in the subject line. The final agenda will be posted on the OHE web site at least 10 days prior to the meeting.

RSVP for the Dec. 14 Advisory Committee Meeting.

2018 meetings will be held at Sierra Health Foundation on Feb. 13, May 3, Sept. 17 and Dec. 6-7.

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Remembering Brandon Harrison

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It is with a heavy heart that we share news of a tremendous loss with the passing of Brandon Harrison, youth movement builder and boys and men of color advocate. In the early morning hours of Oct. 15, Brandon was shot and killed leaving a party in Stockton, California. We had the honor of knowing Brandon and working with him through our programs, including the Positive Youth Justice Initiative, the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund and the Health Leadership Program. Brandon often talked about his hope to change the communities that he and many of his peers come from by eradicating the violence, cycles of poverty and hopelessness so that they could live without fear and achieve greatness. Read more of our tribute to Brandon.

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The Center’s Conference Center in Merced supports community organizations

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We invite nonprofit organizations and public agencies working to improve health and racial equity in the San Joaquin Valley to hold their meetings at The Center’s Conference Center in Merced. With two meeting rooms, the Conference Center is available at no charge for education, training and collaboration. Nonprofit organizations whose vision and goals are compatible with The Center’s are encouraged to apply for use of the facility.

The Center is located at 521 W. Main St. and is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more and apply for meeting space on The Center’s web site.

Watch a video tour of the Conference Center.

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Families enjoy Harvest Festival at Women’s Empowerment

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More than 90 children had a chance to celebrate the fall season at a Harvest Festival for homeless and formerly homeless families at Women’s Empowerment in Sacramento. Sierra Health Foundation staff provided the event during our annual volunteer day. Kids aged 0-12 played games like hula hoop toss around the pumpkin, mummy races, tic tac toe, bean bag toss and pumpkin bowling. They also decorated pumpkins and frames, made scarecrow puppets and had their faces painted.

Women’s Empowerment educates and empowers homeless women with the skills and confidence necessary to secure a job, create a healthy lifestyle, and regain a home for themselves and their children.

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#PeoplePursuing

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Throughout 2017, we are highlighting the work of our partners through a campaign called #PeoplePursuing. We invite you to visit our Facebook and Instagram pages for new inspiring posts!

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