Welcome to the The WSA Exchange, for healthy hearts and minds. Kathy Rogers, American Heart Association Western States Affiliate Executive Vice President will share stories from across the affiliate.
Our Multicultural Initiatives continue to impact lives in the San Gabriel Valley region of Los Angeles with the Check.Change.Control. blood pressure management program. Our collaboration with Allied Pacific of California (APC) recently celebrated the program’s sixth graduating class. The group at APC’s Senior Wellness Center in Alhambra included 35 hypertensive seniors from the local Chinese community. As they completed the program, MCI was organizing the seventh class. We enroll some 30-40 seniors at the Alhambra site every four months. The new group will graduate on April 13. Check.Change.Control. is also underway at APC’s center in Hacienda Heights – that site’s second graduation ceremony is slated for Feb. 18.
Thanks to APC for bringing this impactful program to the local Chinese community.
Students who recently completed the Kids Cook With Heart program at Lake Grove Elementary in Federal Way, WA, have dished up a super-size Thank You. It is posted in the school lunch room, where students are pictured recently making turkey chili as part of the program. They also made their own Lake Grove Kids Cook With Heart t-shirts! The school is hoping to reprise the program since all of the 50 kids who applied could not be accommodated the first time around.
If you have worked with the Western States Affiliate for more than a few years you may recognize our next female superstar, Chef Kirsten Helle, a Seattle, WA volunteer with an incredible lifestyle change story. She grew up with a love of food and a family history of obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. With a burgeoning family herself, she turned her love of food into a nutrition obsession, lost more than 100 pounds and incorporated these new healthy habits into her business as a personal chef.
You can read an archived edition of Kirsten’s inspiring story from our national American Heart Association News or look no further than your local newsstand to see Kirsten featured on the cover of the February 2016 issue of Woman’s Day magazine! Francesca Minas, Communications and Marketing Director in Seattle, WA, worked with our national team to submit Kirsten’s story to the publication. Once selected, Kirsten, along with WTKR NewsChannel 3 reporter and Virginia AHA volunteer, Jessica Larche, and Tracie Johns were flown to Hollywood, CA for a photo shoot and received the star treatment. If you are wondering what that looks like, take a behind the scenes peak at their cover shoot.
These three women share one very important thing in common, they walked their way to health. One small step at a time, these women changed their lives and you can too.
Ensuring the health of future generations is one of our most significant strategies to achieve our 2020 Impact Goal. In Arizona we have a wonderful opportunity through the Halle Heart Children’s Museum to provide fun, healthy learning experiences for many Phoenix area children.
This spring the museum is hosting a unique series of Kids Cook With Heart classes thanks to funding from the BHHS Legacy Foundation. Unlike the typical Kids Cook program where the classes are held at the schools, these classes are being held in the museum’s innovative Kitchen Café and include a special tour of the museum. The series includes 12 classes this spring and focuses primarily on children from underserved communities. The first class was held in November and the combination of hands-on cooking with a chef/nutritionist and the museum tour was a huge hit. I cannot wait to hear more about the success and impact of this program!