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January 2021 Newsletter
Resources for the New Year

Newsletter

Items to include in this newsletter

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COVID-19 Vaccination Education

While the COVID-19 vaccine is safe and effective, there is well-founded skepticism among many in communities of color. A long history of discrimination and mistreatment by health care providers, researchers, and government has led to distrust that can be a barrier to vaccine uptake in some of the most impacted communities. To address this challenge requires our reliance on trusted messengers with authentic voices from those impacted communities. Dr.

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San Mateo County Health Hosts its 3rd Racial Equity Web Forum for Staff and Partners

We held our third racial equity web forum on December 17, 2020, titled Building Racial Equity in County Health.  With over 150 participants from County Health and contracted community partners, the focus of this session was to review the major themes and priorities for advancing racial equity in County Health, and to chart our path forward for updating County Health’s Racial Equity Action Plan (REAP).

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Park Rx Program: Increase Park Usage for our Underserved Communities

In 2020 the San Mateo County Park Rx program issued 800 park passes to CalFresh Healthy Living families. The passes were sponsored by San Mateo County Parks Foundation.  The SMC Park Rx program encourages the use of local parks and outdoor spaces to improve your physical and emotional health.  Benefits of spending time in nature include: Reduced blood pressure and headaches, promotes overall health and well-being, lowers stress, increases academic performance and productivity, improves mood and behavior, and reduces mental fatigue, anger, and frustration.

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Share Your Views on Biking and Walking Needs in San Mateo County

C/CAG, the San Mateo County Congestion Management Agency, is updating its Countywide Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan and vision for biking and walking in San Mateo County. C/CAG is requesting your feedback to make sure that the final Countywide Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan recommendations reflect the values, interests, and priorities of community members throughout San Mateo County. The Draft Plan will be available for public review from February 5th to March 5th, 2021 on our website at bikewalkccag.com.

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Free Access to Mental and Emotional Health via Headspace App

The impacts of COVID-19 are felt by so many of us in our mental and emotional health.  To address this, San Mateo County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services and Headspace are working together to provide free tools, videos, guided exercises and more via the Headspace app to help residents manage stress, concerns, or anxiety.  Normally this resource costs $70 annually but is now available free of charge to anyone who lives, works, or goes to school in San Mateo County. CCCS partners are excited to share these important resources with their clients and communities.

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A New Mental Health Resource for San Mateo County Students

Sequoia Healthcare District, Peninsula Healthcare District, and San Mateo County Office of Education have recently partnered to make CARE SOLACE available to all students and their families in San Mateo County. Anyone from the school community can contact CARE SOLACE for help in connecting with the right local mental health resources. This will be available 24/7 to all students in San Mateo County.

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More Funding from the State to Support In-Person Instruction

Governor Gavin Newsom recently committed an additional $2 billion dollars from the State to support schools with reopening for in-person instruction. Most schools across San Mateo County have offered only online instruction since the beginning of the pandemic in March of 2020. With the new funds, the hope is that schools will be able to make the necessary adjustments to ensure that students and staff can return safely to in-person learning.

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Access to Public WiFi is Expanded!

San Mateo County has added 13 new outdoor locations as part of its Digital Inclusion Initiative to expand access to free WiFi throughout the County.  Access to high-speed internet is critical for accessing education and employment opportunities and other important resources, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The latest expansion of wireless internet was targeted to areas where students had reported poor connectivity at home.  For a list of the new SMC public WiFi locations, please click