Annually, the Ventura County Board of Supervisors presents “Health Champion” awards to six local community organizations on behalf the Board of Supervisors, the Community Commission for Ventura County and the Partnership for a Healthy Ventura County.
The Partnership’s 2014 Health Champion Award recipients are recognized for their efforts toward achieving the vision of the Partnership: “that Ventura County be recognized as the healthiest county in California.” Each of the six HVC strategic committees selects one organization to highlight achievements in their specific focus area.
2014 Health Champion Award Recipients:
For K~12 Coordinated School Health
Ventura County Farm to School Collaborative: With the support of the USDA Farm to School grant, five Ventura County school district food service directors joined together with local farms to form the VC Farm to School collaborative. This multidistrict collaborative has been working together for the past year to institutionalize local purchases of fresh, seasonal fruits and vegetables for school cafeterias, making sure children have access to healthy school meals.
For Healthy Families and Communities
Oxnard Scholars After School Program:
This program has been instrumental in the support and education of students in the Oxnard School District, and their families, on the importance of a healthy lifestyle that is rich in good nutrition, healthy beverage intake and regular physical activity. They created their own champion movement to inspire youth to consume healthy beverages, otherwise known as “Rethink Your Drink.” This movement has been driven by the creation of characters known as the Water Heroes, who visit schools to deliver powerful messages to students on healthy beverage choices.
For Healthy Living for 55+
Ventura Adult Continuing Education (VACE): VACE has been providing health-enhancing classes for older adults, primarily from Ventura, Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Camarillo, Santa Paula and Fillmore, for over 42 years. Classes include: fitness, exercise, and healthy living. Fighting deep budget cuts since 2008, VACE has worked tenaciously to continue their class offerings to older adults. Over the last six years, VACE has sought partnerships with Ventura County Public Health and other agencies to ensure individuals ages 55+ can continue to participate in classes that promote wellness.
For Workplace Wellness
Alcoa Fastening Systems, Newbury Park Operations: Alcoa implemented a wide range of activities to support employees in living healthier lives. The company led a physical activity (walk, run, swim or bike) competition in which employees measured physical activity for 5 months. “Healthy Snack Day” every 3rd Thursday of the month provided employees with fresh fruit. Alcoa offered an onsite clinic for all employees to get their blood pressure, glucose and cholesterol levels checked, provided flu shots, and brought in experts to help engage employees in healthier lifestyles.
For Health Care
First 5 Ventura County (F5VC): F5VC is a leader in improving the mental, developmental and dental health of children prenatal to five years old. Members from F5VC have provided outstanding involvement in leadership, the development, maintenance and continued expansion of the PHVC website, outstanding media and communications for all of PHVC committees, in addition to breastfeeding, healthy eating and active living encouragement. By their work with parents, school districts, community leaders, social service and healthcare agencies, F5VC has helped to design and fund an extensive network of essential services for young children and their families.
Bell Arts Factory: The Bell Arts Factory and owner Jim Rice have championed the use of its facilities as a community hub for activities, discussion, and actions related to healthy eating and active living. From Westside coalition meetings and movie nights (with healthy snacks) to Zumba classes and mini-gardens, Bell Arts has anchored itself as a beacon of community and good health, providing an essential site for residents to gather, learn and build a healthier West Ventura.
Thank you Champions!
Please join us in commending these recipients in their exemplary work in response to the obesity crisis and contributing towards the goal of Ventura County being named the healthiest county in California.
The nomination process
Join us each year to nominate our Ventura County Health Champions. You may nominate an organization or member of the community at any time. Award winners are selected from the nominees each January by the related Healthy Ventura County Coalition committees. Use the following Champion Award Nomination Form and return your nominations to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Health Champion Award Document to Download