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Sierra Health Foundation Partnerships

Congratulations to Health Leadership Program Class XIV graduates


Health Leadership Program Class XIV members celebrated their graduation on May 10 at Sierra Health Foundation. Family, friends and colleagues gathered to recognize the 26 leaders for successfully completing six months of transformative leadership training.

Angela Glover Blackwell, CEO of PolicyLink, gave a moving commencement address, calling on the Health Leadership fellows to lead their organizations and communities in efforts to achieve health and racial equity.

Sierra Health Foundation President and CEO Chet P. Hewitt and lead program faculty Dr. Kenneth W. Kizer of the Institute for Population Health Improvement at UC Davis and Dr. Richard F. Callahan of TAP International recognized the graduating leaders and presented them with certificates. Alumni members Joe Xavier, Class VIII, Director of the California Department of Rehabilitation, and Nilda Valmores, Class XIII, Executive Director of My Sister’s House, welcomed the graduates to the Health Leadership Program Alumni Network.

Learn more about the program on the Health Leadership Program web page.

Photo of HLP graduates

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Advocates call for California to invest in boys and men of color


On May 7, California Funders for Boys and Men of Color members Chet P. Hewitt of The Center at Sierra Health Foundation and Shane Murphy Goldsmith of Liberty Hill Foundation joined Assemblymember Reggie Jones-Sawyer and youth at the State Capitol in calling for $100 million from the state budget to establish the Youth Reinvestment Fund.

The Youth Reinvestment Fund would be the first-ever state fund specifically dedicated to keeping young people out of the justice system and in the care of community organizations that are best able to provide guidance and support. The proposal would allocate $15 million to hire social workers within the public defender office to support cases involving minors in juvenile or criminal court. Another $10 million would fund tribal diversion programs for Native American youth, and $75 million would fund local diversion programs and community-based services for at-risk youth over a three-year grant period.

Watch the press conference
Read more

Press conference photo

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Chet P. Hewitt testifies at State Senate oversight hearing on Black Infant Health Program


Chet P. Hewitt, President and CEO of The Center at Sierra Health Foundation, testified at a May 10 Senate Budget Sub-Committee on Health and Human Services oversight hearing on the California Department of Public Health’s Black Infant Health Program. A co-chair of the Steering Committee on Reduction of African American Child Deaths, Mr. Hewitt presented information on the Black Child Legacy Campaign’s interventions to reduce pre-term and low birth rates as a model for other regions in the state.

The Black Infant Health Program works to improve African-American infant and maternal health, as well as decrease health and social inequities for women and infants. Participants learn proven strategies to reduce stress and develop life skills. Learn more on the California Department of Public Health web site.

Photo from oversight hearing

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john a. powell speaks on Race, Racism and Otherness at Sierra Health Foundation


Our latest Speaker Series event on May 22 featured john a. powell, the Director of UC Berkeley’s Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society and internationally recognized author and expert in the areas of civil rights and civil liberties, and a wide range of issues including race, structural racialization, ethnicity, housing, poverty and democracy.

This powerful discussion focused on solutions-based policy and advocacy approaches to systemic racism and othering – the social and political actions dismissing individuals and groups as different and therefore less worthy. powell was joined by a panel of diverse voices on the subjects of advocacy and social justice in the face of historical and modern displacement and marginalization — and opportunities for change. Sierra Health Foundation President and CEO Chet P. Hewitt moderated the panel, which included Morning Star Gali, the Director of Native Justice Now; Nicholas Hatten, Executive Director of San Joaquin Pride Center; and Virginia Knowlton Marcus, Director of Legal Advocacy at Disability Rights California.

We will post an event video on our Speaker Series web page.

Photo of Speaker Series panel

Photo, left to right: Chet P. Hewitt, john a. powell, Nicholas Hatten, Morning Star Gali and Virginia Knowlton Marcus.

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Discussion focuses on California’s older adults and housing needs


Last week we brought together local and state leaders for an important discussion on California’s emerging older adult profile, with particular focus on disparities by race and ethnicity, and what it means for housing. The event, which drew 90 participants from 20 counties, was sponsored in collaboration with the California Commission on Aging and eight partner organizations. This program was the second in a series on healthy aging and was designed in response to a survey following the first event, which showed interest in affordable and appropriate housing for older adults.

Photo of Asm. Kalra

The program, titled The Changing Portrait of California’s Older Adults: Implications for Housing and How We Live, looked at how racial and ethnic disparities throughout the lifespan impact health, income and living conditions. Presenters included Jennifer Ailshire, PhD, Assistant Professor at the University of Southern California’s Leonard Davis School of Gerontology; West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon; and Alicia Sebastian, Director of Housing and Community Development Programs at the California Coalition for Rural Housing. Assemblymember Ash Kalra, Chair of the Aging and Long-Term Care Committee, joined in a panel discussion moderated by Sharon Grewal, AICP, Director of American Planning Association CA Northern Section.

See the event web page for presentations and resources.

Thank you to our co-sponsor, California Commission on Aging, and our event partners: AARP California, American Planning Association CA Northern Section, Archstone Foundation, Grantmakers In Aging, Marin Community Foundation, Metta Fund, Placer Community Foundation and The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation.

Photo: Assemblymember Ash Kalra

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Black Child Legacy Campaign premieres poetic service announcements


In partnership with Sacramento Area Youth Speaks (SAYS), the Black Child Legacy Campaign released poetic service announcements (PSAs) featuring youth spoken word poets calling for an end to community violence. On May 30, the Black Child Legacy Campaign and SAYS hosted a community launch of the PSAs at the Crocker Art Museum, followed by a panel discussion on youth violence prevention strategies. The PSAs are available on YouTube.

PSA screenshots

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Employment opportunities


We currently have job openings and are accepting applications for an Executive Assistant and a Controller. We soon will be accepting applications for a Vice President of Policy and Communications. See our Employment web page for information and application instructions.

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Somewhere to Turn toolkits offer support for adoptive families, service providers


Guides screenshot

We were pleased to provide support for Families NOW in publishing a set of guides / toolkits called Somewhere to Turn: Meeting the Mental Health Needs of Adoptive and Guardianship Families. The four guides offer tools and tips to help agencies and mental health professionals implement recommendations made by the AB 1790 Stakeholder Group on how to remove barriers to the provision of mental health services by adoption-competent professionals. The recommendations are grounded in the guidance found in California’s Integrated Core Practice Model.

Guides are available for Community Mental Health, Managed Care and Fee-for-Service Providers; County Behavioral Health Care Agengies; Private Nonprofit Child Welfare Agencies; and Public Child Welfare Agencies. Each guide includes recommendations, a self-assessment tool and tip sheets for providers, parents and youth.

Access the guides on our AB 1790 Implementation Guides web page.

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Art exhibit supports Mental Health Month effort to help stop stigma


Art exhibit photo

In recognition of Mental Health Month, the Mental Illness: It’s not always what you think project participated in several events in the community in May, distributing helpful information in an effort to help stop stigma and discrimination, promote mental health and wellness, and inspire hope for people and families living with mental illness. As part of this effort, an exhibit of expressive artwork from Sacramento County residents who are living with, or support others living with, mental illness is on display through June 30 at our Conference and Education Center, 1321 Garden Highway in Sacramento.

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Throughout 2018, we’re continuing to highlight the work of our partners through the #PeoplePursuing campaign. We invite you to visit our Facebook and Instagram pages for new inspiring posts!

People Pursuing screenshot

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