Building Healthy Communities Long Beach: November 2014
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In this issue of BHC News...
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November 21:
BHC Breakfast & Learning Club (How Children Succeed)

December 3:
Parent Workshop: Advocacy in Schools

December 13:
Long Beach Time Exchange Holiday Gathering
Community Calendar   |   Workgroups   |   Jobs   |   Resources
Long Beach Votes for #SchoolsNotPrisons
Proposition 47 passes!Thanks to the collaboration of local youth, non-profit organizations, and congregations, Long Beach helped carry a statewide victory for Proposition 47 in the November 2014 election. Proposition 47, the ballot measure to retroactively reclassify six low-level felonies as misdemeanors, now gives thousands of Californians the chance to access housing, jobs, and assistance for mental health and substance abuse. The measure passed with 59% of the vote statewide. 

In the communities of Central, North, and West Long Beach, Long Beach Rising canvassers along with 178 youth and community volunteers knocked on over 14,000 doors and talked to 6,006 voters, ultimately securing 4,601 votes in support of Proposition 47. By engaging voters in these three areas, volunteers and youth were able to educate voters in low-income communities of color about how Proposition 47 could impact Long Beach. 

In addition to the “Get Out The Vote” efforts, many other events helped build local support for Proposition 47. Youth and adult allies from the Building Healthy Communities Youth Committee walked neighborhoods every Saturday in October distributing over 1,000 ‘#SchoolsNotPrisons’ stickers and hosted an Election Day rally on the corner of Atlantic and Anaheim. To promote the importance of Proposition 47, Khmer Girls in Action themed their annual Halloween “School House of Horrors” event around how poverty and prisons are “haunting” our community. 

Organizations leading the local canvassing efforts included Californians for Justice (CFJ), the Greater Long Beach Interfaith Community Organization (ICO), Khmer Girls in Action (KGA), and Long Beach Rising (part of the Long Beach Coalition for Good Jobs and a Healthy Community). Thank you to all the partners and community members who volunteered their time and efforts to securing a victory for Proposition 47. 
Get Connected through Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach
Health Happens HereHave you seen the latest events and posts with Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach? New events are posted every week at!

Looking for a job? Browse and share the BHC Long Beach Community Jobs Board to find current non-profit organizations that are hiring within the Long Beach and South Los Angeles County area. Visit for more information. 

Connect with BHC Long Beach on social media! If you prefer your community updates in short messages, pictures, or videos, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, or YouTube
Residents Get Involved at BHC Fall Gathering (Photos)
Pumpkin Carving ContestClick here to see photos from the event!

On Saturday, October 25th, Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach hosted our Fall Gathering at Stevenson Elementary School. The afternoon event highlighted the current collaborations and campaigns in Long Beach, including work on healthy food access. 
The day was filled with delicious food, a variety of resources, and fun activities for families to enjoy. Lunch was served from Sliced and Diced Eatery while Healthy Active Long Beach gave the crowd a deliciously educational demonstration highlighting healthy cooking recipes. We also had several partner organizations host activities and distribute resources based on their work. 

BHC partner organizations and residents carved pumpkins with the theme “what a healthy community means to you” in mind. Children and adults alike got excited about voting for their favorite pumpkin. Impressively, a pumpkin carved by a 12-year old took home the prize with a spectacular design that her mom explained took her most of the night to finish. Her pumpkin featured pictures of children playing soccer with large fields surrounded by tall apartment buildings to emphasize the need for more parks in her neighborhood.
Our contest winner!Steering Committee member Ladine Chan from Educated Men with Meaningful Messages introduced videos and community speakers about our BHC-related work and how residents can get involved. Thanks to Youth Committee member Mykel Duffy, Steering Committee Chair Eva Ramirez, Long Beach Fresh Coordinator Tony Damico, and Long Beach Alliance for Food and Fitness Coordinator Jennifer Ponce for sharing their work with the audience!

All in all, the Fall Gathering was a fun and festive way to provide community residents with the chance to find out about Building Healthy Communities and access new resources.

We would like to give thanks to Stevenson Elementary School’s principal, David Zaid, for all of his support in arranging the space for the event. Lastly, special thanks to the Planning Committee who worked hard on this event: Christina Amiot, Christine Petit, Eva Ramirez, James Suazo, Julia Castaneda, Ladine Chan, Micaela Salatino, and Valerie Smith.
"Pass or Fail in Cambodia Town"
"Pass or Fail in Cambodia Town"Over three hundred Cambodian residents and community members attended the sneak preview screening of the “America by the Numbers” episode “Pass or Fail in Cambodia Town,” featuring Executive Producer Maria Hinojosa. The event featured a panel discussion facilitated by Hinojosa that highlighted perspectives from youth, systems leaders, and policy advocates.

The PBS documentary series “America by the Numbers with Maria Hinojosa” explores the changing demographics in communities across America. Filmed over the spring of 2014, series host Maria Hinojosa and her team visited Cambodia Town (located within the Building Healthy Communities focus area) and interviewed local residents and youth, including Khmer Girls in Action organizers Seng So and Sophya Chhiv. The premiered episode, “Pass or Fail in Cambodia Town,” spotlights the socioeconomic and emotional challenges that local Cambodian youth face. 

After the screening, Hinojosa moderated a panel that discussed the educational needs of Cambodian youth in Long Beach Unified School District and what the school district could do to better support the needs of the Cambodian community. Members of the audience had the opportunity to participate by submitting questions to the panel for their discussion. 

To watch the episode “Pass or Fail in Cambodia Town,” visit the “America by the Numbers with Maria Hinojosa” website. Thanks to St. Mary’s Medical Center, The California Endowment, Futuro Media Group, and the Cambodian Advocacy Committee for planning and supporting this community screening.
WE Connect Enrolls Long Beach Residents in Health Care and Assistance Programs
As the health care marketplace open enrollment window began on November 15, The California Endowment and Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach in partnership with the City of Long Beach encouraged young adults and the uninsured to enroll in Medi-Cal and private insurance plans. Nearly 600 Long Beach residents attended the Long Beach WE Connect Health Care Enrollment and Resource Fair, where they accessed various resources including health coverage renewal and enrollment support, medical services, financial advising and a healthy grocery giveaway.

The WE Connect Health Care Enrollment and Resources Fair is part of The Endowment’s Asegúrate campaign, an outreach and enrollment effort aimed at engaging low-income Latinos and getting them enrolled into health coverage. Local and state partners joined forces at Jordan High School in North Long Beach to empower families to lead healthier and more financially secure lives. Now that the Covered California marketplace is officially open, Long Beach residents now have ways to access the tools to focus on their health and well being. 

Community partners – including LA Care, Families in Good Health, and the Long Beach Immigrant Rights Coalition – provided free access to resources that helped residents enroll in programs such as Medi-Cal, CalFresh, free preventive medical screenings, and the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. 

“Many Long Beach young adults face challenges to leading healthy lives that are out of their control,” explains Long Beach Building Healthy Communities Program Manager, Jennifer Chheang.  “By connecting our youth and our families with free or low-cost quality health coverage and financial resources, they can begin to overcome these barriers and set themselves on paths to success.” 

“We’re making Long Beach a better community by making sure that we’re healthy. Helping our neighbors use available resources gives them a helping hand when they need it” says Kelly Colopy, director of the City of Long Beach Health Department. “Making your health a priority before it becomes an emergency makes Long Beach a stronger city. Programs like Medi-Cal, DACA, and Covered California make it easier for residents to do so.”
Come Learn with Us!
Looking for a fun way to learn more about issues impacting our community? With the ongoing “Breakfast and Learning Club” and the “Brown Bag Discussion Series,” residents and community members will now have opportunities to learn and dialogue about these local issues. Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach is kicking off the series with the “Breakfast and Learning Club” on Friday, November 21st, 2014 to discuss Paul Tough’s “How Children Succeed.”

At the “Breakfast and Learning Club,” participants will be discussing the first chapter of “How Children Succeed,” which argues that the qualities that matter most for children are with their character: skills like perseverance, curiosity, conscientiousness, optimism, and self-control. A light breakfast will be provided and the first chapter will be provided upon RSVP. We will be hosting a Spanish discussion group with the translated chapter of “How Children Succeed” in the beginning of the new year. 
Additionally, BHC’s “Brown Bag Discussion Series” will debut in December and be held regularly through May 2015. At each meeting of the series, a segment of the film Unnatural Causes will be screened followed by a group discussion of the  interplay between inequality and health. The first  brown-bag discussion will be Wednesday, December 17th from at noon at the Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach office.

If you or your organization are interested in either of these learning opportunities or have any questions, please RSVP to Christina Amiot at or leave a message at 562-436-4800.
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