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August 2022 Newsletter
Fostering Health Through the Outdoors


Items to include in this newsletter


Park Rx Prescription Program Web Changes Means More Access

The San Mateo County Park Rx Prescription Program which promotes the use and enjoyment of parks and public lands to benefit physical and mental health, has moved to the Get Healthy San Mateo County website. The move ensures community members have access to the most up-to-date information on the events page to enjoy the many benefits of outdoor activities. While we will be highlighting some events in Spanish, website visitors now have the option to use Google translate in their native language.


Boards and Commissions Vacancies

There are nine vacant seats on multiple County of San Mateo boards and commissions. There are 15 vacant seats on the newly formed Equity Advisory Committee of the California Transportation Commission.

County of San Mateo: There are a total of nine vacant seats on multiple boards and commissions such as the Domestic Violence Council, the Commission on the Status of Women, and Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) Commission. Deadlines are quickly approaching; apply today!


Living Through a Pandemic Behind Bars

For the last two years, Stanford researchers have been partnering with county correctional health officials to understand the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on people living and working in local jails. The study, now published in peer-reviewed journals, identified several barriers to infection control in jails, including inadequate access to face masks, deterrents to testing and symptom-reporting, and mistrust of jail staff.


Paid COVID Sick Leave Expires September 30, 2022

Community Legal Services in East Palo Alto supports workers’ rights with legal services and outreach to community members across San Mateo County. Here are their latest resources on vaccination rights and supplemental paid sick leave.


Valuable Feedback from the Community Collaboration Process Input Sessions  

Community Collaboration process input sessions have been completed. We were able to meet with 26 groups.  Thank you to our working group and key partners who engaged in the process with us. We are excited to share the data internally and externally in the coming weeks. We have learned so much during this process and are excited for our next steps towards a community collaboration framework. This is the just one step of many that will bring our Public Health, Policy and Planning department closer to the community.


And the Program of the Year Award goes to…

San Mateo County hosted its first Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition Bike Summit on August 18 at the Millbrae Recreation Center. It was great to see a large turnout of advocates of active transportation from government, law enforcement, non-profit, and the public to discuss projects, policies, and issues that will make Silicon Valley a truly bike-friendly place to live, work, and play.


Strong Advocacy and Collaboration Helps Students Take Transit for Free!

SamTrans Youth Unlimited Program is now permanent and will support eligible students throughout the county to ride SamTrans for free. This is a great example of good advocacy efforts and strong cross-sector partnerships. The Redwood City Safe Routes to School Taskforce, which includes Safe Routes to School partners Redwood City Together, County Office of Education, SamTrans, Siena Youth Center, City of Redwood City, Redwood City School District staff, parents, and Health Policy and Planning, has been a key player.


Get Your Dose of Nature – Community Nature Day at Flood Park – September 24

Residents are invited to Community Nature Day on Saturday, September 24 at Flood Park in Menlo Park. Community Nature Days are designed to welcome residents who may not regularly visit the parks and experience the County’s open space, play games, and enjoy story time with staff from the libraries. Doctors from our local clinics will be at the event to discuss the health benefits of spending time in nature. To learn more about the benefits of spending time in nature you can visit our Park Rx events webpage.


Nutrition Education Lessons

In partnership with the YMCA, the CalFresh Healthy living staff taught youth in the summer program at the YMCA Rocketship Academy in Redwood City.  Children that attended the academy were taught the Let’s Get Healthy curriculum by the Dairy Council of California.  They learned about the benefits of starting their day with a healthy breakfast, about the different food groups and they took quick physical activity breaks.


COVID-19 Safe Schools Framework Replaces Pandemic Recovery Framework

The San Mateo County Office of Education, in partnership with San Mateo County Health, has updated their school guidance, COVID-19 Safe Schools Framework (CSSF) where they detail the most up-to-date school guidance in reference to COVID-19. The document replaces the Pandemic Recovery Framework. We highly encourage schools to have proper ventilation systems in place as this can help to reduce the number of virus-carrying particles indoors.


San Mateo County School Food Service Director’s Appreciation

On August 2, 2022, the CalFresh Healthy Living Program, University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE), Second Harvest Food Bank of San Mateo and Silicon Valley, and the San Mateo County Office of Education came together to have a celebration for Food Service Director’s in San Mateo County.  We appreciate all of their hard work and dedication to ensuring all students have access to healthy meals.