More California Families Can Eat Healthy with Health Net's $120,000 Grant to Support Vouchers 4 Veggies Program
Community-based organizations, El Concilio and E Center, partner to provide residents of San Joaquin, Sutter and Yuba counties with fresh fruits and vegetables.
Sacramento, Calif. (July 19, 2022) – A $120,000 grant from Health Net has empowered Vouchers 4 Veggies (V4V) to expand into three rural California counties, providing more families with access to fresh, healthy food. This grant is part of Health Net's ongoing commitment to improving community health by addressing chronic food insecurity in California communities.
"Access to healthy food should not be a privilege," said Dr. Pooja Mittal, Chief Health Equity Officer at Health Net. "Good nutrition is necessary to boost energy, keep our bodies healthy, and reduce the risk of some chronic diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease. According to Nourish California, an Oakland-based nonprofit, there are 4.7 million adults and 2 million children across the state who are affected by food insecurity."
Since November 2021, more than 250 low-income households with young children have been successfully enrolled into the program in San Joaquin, Sutter, and Yuba counties. By partnering with recognized and respected community-based organizations such as the E Center and El Concilio, V4V provides individuals and families in need with monthly food vouchers for fruit and vegetables. These vouchers are redeemable at participating grocery retailers for the following six months. The program also offers education so that people can learn more about taking care of their health.
"Health Net's support has allowed us to partner with Vouchers 4 Veggies and reach more people who need our help providing nutritious food for themselves and their families," said Jose R. Rodriguez, President and Chief Executive Officer of El Concilio. "We are incredibly grateful for their commitment to addressing food insecurity in our state. Together, we are working to increase access to healthy food for all."
"Ensuring that residents struggling with food insecurity can get the fresh food and vegetables they need is one of my top priorities as a Supervisor," said Miguel Villapudua, San Joaquin County Supervisor for District 1. "We are proud to add Vouchers 4 Veggies to our list of food assistance programs. Health Net's support will go a long way in providing access to healthy food for those who need it most."
This news builds off Health Net's recent announcement of awarding more than $350,000 to 10 community-based organizations in the Central Valley that work to improve food access and health equity. With funding to expand their initiatives, these organizations combat food insecurity through approaches such as food banks, providing school lunches, transporting food to hard-to-reach neighborhoods and assisting seniors with food program applications.
Health Net has been providing care for the state's most vulnerable residents for more than 40 years. They continue to be at the forefront of the movement to improve health equity with multi-faceted, collaborative and culturally relevant programs and interventions at the statewide and local level. Visit BridgingtheDivideCA.com to learn more about Health Net's industry-leading efforts to drive health equity, and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.