The United Samaritans Foundation's Daily Bread lunch truck program is starting out the new year with a much-needed financial boost, thanks to Kaiser Permanente.
Kaiser Permanente in the Central Valley donated over one million dollars this year to non-profit organizations that serve Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties to improve access to health services, promote healthy eating and opportunities for fitness, and help management of chronic disease.
United Samaritans received $5,000 to help provide nutritious free lunches to low-income and homeless individuals in nine county towns, including Turlock, Keyes, Denair and Hughson.
"We are grateful that Kaiser Permanente has awarded us a $5,000 grant that will provide fresh fruits and vegetables for our Daily Bread Lunch program," said Maris Sturtevant, chief operating manager of United Samaritans. "Through this grant we will be able to provide our local people with nutritious meals as other alternatives."
The Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit grants, which range from $1,000 to $75,000, come at a time when other funding sources are limited and private donations are down. Community organizations and county health departments are among the grant recipients.
Golden Valley Health Centers, which operate two sites in Turlock, received just over $48,000 to help in the work towards becoming recognized as a patient-centered medical home, providing care coordination and self-management support for patients with chronic conditions
"It's all about providing higher quality care and better coordinated care for our patients," said Christine Noguera, interim chief executive officer of Golden Valley Health Centers. "The grant helps provide a coordinated approach to care so that patients will have help in navigating the health care system to be able to access needed services."
Other Stanislaus County grant recipients were:
• Healthy Aging, which received $42,118 to increase access to health prevention programs for older adults and focus on chronic conditions;
• Hughson Family Resource Center: $49,000 to increase health care and mental health services for low-income and uninsured, $14,600 to help disadvantaged families treat and/or prevent obesity and $1,000 to support a program that gives backpacks and school supplies to underserved children;
• Sierra Vista Child and Family Services, which received $50,000 to support culturally competent mental health counseling, family support and prevention services;
• The Salvation Army, $50,000 to improve access to medical, dental, and optical services for uninsured and underinsured clients of Berberian Homeless Center;
• Tuolumne River Trust, $20,000 to provide programs and activities at the Airport Neighborhood Community Center in Modesto;
• United Way Stanislaus, $40,000 to provide the community with a comprehensive database of health and human services that can be accessed by calling the county's 2-1-1 hotline and $26,000 to fund focus groups with the purpose of gathering data regarding health needs and concerns of county residents;
• Doctors Medical Center, $49,917 to provide assessment, education and access to health care services for children at risk for diabetes.