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August 27, 2013 > Ashland Youth Center receives grant

Ashland Youth Center receives grant

Submitted By Jessie Mangaliman

A $75,000 grant to REACH Ashland Youth Center, for a project to prevent drug and alcohol abuse among young people, was announced August 1 by Kaiser Permanente Senior Vice President and Area Manager Tom Hanenburg during a special event called "Somethin 'bout My Body."

"Through the Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit Program, we support a variety of programs that help youth in our local communities to improve their health, nutrition and physical activity, to learn how to prevent violence and bullying, and to channel their energies into positive behaviors," Hanenburg said.

This strategic grant will fund a new project called "Real Talk & Relationships Lift Us." The goal of the project is to prevent drug and alcohol abuse and educate youth by providing services and activities that are holistic, healing, build capacity and develop leadership skills.

"Being healthy. Having fun. Learning something. And doing something good in the world," said Vassilisa Johri, director of Health & Wellness for the youth center. "That's what we do here."

The day's events kicked off with Loter’a, an interactive game and performance by Kaiser Permanente Educational Theater actors, based on the Latin American version of Bingo with a healthy twist. The game included kid-friendly, digestible information on healthy activity, the importance of eating fruits and vegetables.

During the afternoon breakout session, the Kaiser Permanente Educational Theater presented a special workshop on its award-winning program, "Secrets," which uses the power of live theater for an educational session about HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases. The breakout session also included Zumba exercise classes.

The event wrapped up with a viewing of the Kaiser Permanente-sponsored HBO documentary "Weight of the Nation for Kids," followed by a discussion with Kaiser Permanente Hayward Pediatrician, Dr. Paul Espinas.

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