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October 2015 Newsletter
Health's on the horizon


That was a big week! 

Thanks to everyone for joining our forum and webinar last week! We hope you were able to learn more about how we’ll tackle our priorities and how you can access all the resources on our website. Check out the Community Implementation Funding webinar recording, new FAQ on the RFP, and slides from the Building Healthy, Equitable Communities Forum on our Community Implementation Funding page.

Don’t forget, funding applications are due November 6 through our new online application system! Don’t miss this opportunity to propose projects to advance the four priorities of Get Healthy San Mateo County.

Visualizing a good internship 

When you see data do you see potential? We’re looking for a stellar intern who can help us analyze data and create city health profiles and maps to help inspire healthy changes. Please share with your networks as well – we’re looking for someone who can help us 16-20 hours/week!

Items to include in this newsletter

Case Study

Youth Reaching Youth
Case Study: The HEAL Project

The Need: Complimentary Goals

Students who participate in Pilarcitos High School’s alternative education program in Half Moon Bay, California are academically behind for a variety of reasons. The hurdles many of these students face include: childhood trauma, full-time jobs, undiagnosed learning disabilities, pregnancy and parenthood, and—on top of all that—English is commonly their second language.

Health by Numbers

Household income

People with higher incomes have more opportunities to engage in health-promoting activities and tend to live longer. Here in San Mateo County, the median household income is highest for Asians ($101,080) and Whites ($100,793) and lowest for Blacks ($55,219) and Latinos ($62,157).


The key is affordable homes

A few of us were able to join the annual Housing Leadership Day and we couldn’t be more energized to tackle healthy housing issues in our county. There was great discussion about the need for affordable housing that helps people who have low incomes remain in their communities. Keynote speaker Dr. Penny Nixon discussed immediate actions to tackling the housing crisis, such as keeping an open dialogue and collaborating across sectors to find and implement solutions. The conference featured our own Strategies for Building Healthy, Equitable Communities!


What’s fair in Health and Housing

Where you live shouldn’t determine how long you live. Yet the place you call home dictates the transit, jobs, schools, and healthy options easily available to you.


Living is getting good in Redwood City

Redwood City’s City Council recently reviewed and considered action on 5 affordable housing items at their October 2015 meeting, and moved forward on a new developer fee that will raise money for affordable housing projects. Way to go Redwood City for taking direct action to support housing affordability! Stable and affordable housing protects health and provides the ability to engage in healthy opportunities.


Brisbane’s healthy vision

Around 200 people joined Brisbane’s pop up workshop in October 2015 for planning activities to create a vision for the future of Brisbane’s Parkside Area, where healthy communities is a key goal for the city. To get the juices flowing, we shared with residents the 10 components that make up a healthy, equitable community that many of you helped us develop and asked residents to identify their own priorities for creating a Healthy Brisbane.


Urban ag coming to a street near you

The San Mateo County Food System Alliance has released a new report with recommendations for implementing statewide bill AB 551 – the Urban Agriculture Incentive Zones Act of 2013. The report explains how to foster urban agriculture and a sustainable food system in the county by allowing landowners to receive tax incentives for dedicating land to agricultural uses. This will create more gardens, healthier food options, education about farming and nutrition, and physical activity!


More lanes, more commuting

The San Mateo County Transportation Authority voted this month to fund Highway 101 expansion projects at the expense of bike and pedestrian improvements. Research has shown that expanding highways does not actually reduce traffic but instead leads to more driving. Check out resources for solving our congestion problem by increasing active transportation options like taking the train, walking, and biking.


Planning for health

Want to weigh in on the draft statewide general plan guidelines for local jurisdictions that includes new sections on how to promote health and equity in future developments? Join the CA Pan-Ethnic Health Network’s 11/12 Blueprint for Health meeting in Oakland and share your feedback.


A taste of healthier schools

Want to learn more about our strategies for promoting healthy schools? Join us and the County Office of Ed’s at the School Wellness Alliance meeting on 11/4 at the Sobrato Center for Nonprofits in Redwood City! We’ll review our priorities for educational attainment in more detail and the Youth Commission will update us on their policy priorities and how we can partner to improve the lives of youth across the county.


Passing the baton

South San Francisco’s Parks and Rec has partnered with Play Works to train 25 preschool and after-school program staff and teachers on a curriculum to increase student physical activity. Children who get regular physical activity perform better in school. Trained teachers returned to their schools and trained more school staff and implemented the program for over 500 kids per day during the school year! The program has seen great success thanks to Parks and Rec providing consultant support to teachers with curriculum implementation.


Investing in people

Join local advocates on 11/12 from 8:30am to 1pm to discuss how to build a more equitable Bay Area at the 5th Annual Bay Area Asset Building Symposium. Up for discussion: how can families and cities respond to rising housing costs and stalled wages? Join the conversation and help address growing disparities in the Bay Area.


Rising up together

Mayors from 7 cities in the South Bay have launched a new minimum wage effort! First up? Backing a study that looks at economic impacts of raising minimum wage to address the growing income gap between the rich and poor – adequate income and benefits can help build financial stability and improve overall health and well-being. They will also study training opportunities and a “ramp up” period for small businesses.