Long Beach, CA | May 15, 2012 — Tickets are selling quickly for the tenth installment of the famed “DioNicEss” food & drink pairing series, which is coming to Long Beach’s celebrated Beachwood BBQ & Brewing on June 10. To immortalize this milestone, the theme of this dinner has been dubbed “DioNicEss X: Coming of Age,” not only as a reflective look at the progression of the previous nine events, but also a play on the fact that every course, as well as each beer paired with it, will have undergone some sort of careful aging.
To all our Fantastic Athletes for Real Medicine Runners….Fantastic race this weekend! You did it! After months of hard training and dedication you completed the 2012 LA Honda Marathon and 5K. Your efforts and hard work also contributed to a very successful fundraiser and we are very grateful for your support in helping us reach our fundraising goal. We are still counting donations but it looks like we might have over $20,000 from Athletes for Real Medicine donors/sponsors!
I’ve had a great time and it has been a pleasure and honor working with you, and I can’t wait to do it all over again!
Real Medicine Foundation and the Florence Western Medical Clinic in South Los Angeles hosted its 4th Annual Children’s Holiday Party on December 17, 2011. Each year, RMF provides toys, sports equipment, books and grocery cards for holiday dinners to meet the needs of these often-overlooked families.
Over 60 bags of gifts were given away at this Saturday’s Holiday Party for kids in South Los Angeles!-To read more about our programs at the Florence Western Medical Clinic, click here.
October 21st 2011, I had the privilege of going undercover as a waitress at the highly publicized and anticipated Dionicess IX, a culinary extravaganza which has been appearing on the LA scene for the past 3 years, with all proceeds benefitting charity.
Gev Kazanchyan,a member of the Real Medicine Advisory Board and creator of these events was introduced to Real Medicine 3 years ago through our Armenian Project Director, Nairy Ghazourian. This introduction would lead to a series of pairings over the next 3 years benefitting our project in Shinuhayr, Armenia. From Dionicess II (which paired Coffee & Chocolate) to Dionicess VI (which paired Beer, Sausage & Fries) all have had rave reviews and have brought much needed awareness and support to our Armenian Projects.
This year’s event teamed up Gev with Dave Waltrous (Beachwood BBQ & Brewing) , Randy Clemens and Matt Biancaniello featuring “Beer & Booze” with an assortment of vegetarian dishes to compliment each.
This past weekend, Real Medicine Foundation & the Florence Western Medical Center hosted their first “Back to School” Event, providing more than 60 children and families with brand new backpacks filled with school supplies.
Recognizing the needs of this community has not been the challenge; the challenge has been how to encourage the community to show up for the services available to them. Free health and fitness programs for adults and children are offered at the center by Real Medicine, yet often we find a low attendance due to lack of access to information, transportation and health issues. While we have worked diligently to encourage the patients with incentives to attend these programs, at times it can be frustrating. Many charities in Los Angeles share this dilemma.
So the question becomes how can we bring about awareness of our programming in an area where the digital age has fallen behind? Phone numbers on sign-up sheets are often disconnected the following month. Most patients do not have home computers, making emails a futile effort. How can we meet the needs of the community and bring forth something that they will show up for, while giving them access to information about the center’s services and our programming?
Annual Report for RMF Outreach program at the Florence Western Medical Clinic
Real Medicine’s partnership with Whole Foods Market, Venice, California is continuing successfully. In the last 12 months, 1,728 patients were provided with bags of nutritious groceries. Patients sign up at the Florence Western Medical Center’s front desk to be considered to receive food. We are looking into additional partnerships with organizations and grocery stores that would be able to meet the growing dietary needs within this community.
Our children’s Health & Fitness program is held the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of the month, from 10am-2pm. Fitness instructor Roz Baker provides nutritional education and goals along with a fitness “boot camp” that provides children with fun, yet challenging exercises and a cardiovascular workout. Our yoga instructors provide the children with stress relieving breathing techniques and poses that they can take into their daily lives. 144 children were provided Health & Fitness instruction along with yoga and nutritional classes last year. The physical condition of most of the children participating in the program starts out as poor.
Beginning in January 2008, Real Medicine Foundation partnered with Whole Foods Market Venice, CA to provide the less fortunate of South Los Angeles with healthy food alternatives to help battle the alarmingly high incidents of heart disease, diabetes and obesity within the community. The neighborhood affected has a median household income of $41,175, with an average of 3 members per household. The community has been hit particularly hard by the economic crisis, is well above the national average for risk of crimes being committed, lower than average education levels, and household expenditures are below average.
I broke a sweat today at the Florence Western Medical Center as the kids, Roz and I ended our bi-monthly children’s program physical fitness session with crunches and pushups. Roz, an amazing and energetic personal trainer and instructor, helped us all get our heart rates up with fun games and dance moves. “We need exercise everyday! Exercise helps strengthen our hearts so we can live long, healthy lives”, Roz reminded us as we get into our groove learning a salsa routine. Roz also helped develop the kids’ hand eye coordination with a rubber ball activity. We each had a ball except Roz and we had to quickly pass them around the circle without dropping them. It was a lot of fun watching the kids work together to stay alert and on task. After a cool down and some stretching, we sat down for some healthy snacks and story time. We read “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (the kids’ choice!) and my personal favorite, “I will Never Not Ever Eat a Tomato”. This story was in preparation for our next activity – constructing a food pyramid. I provided handouts of the new pyramid and we went through each category. I explained why we need to eat a well balanced diet and how the right foods helps us, along with exercise, to grow up and lead healthy lives. I asked everyone to share their favorite healthy foods and we practiced categorizing them. For kids with dietary restrictions, we discussed other foods beyond dairy and meat products that are good sources of calcium and protein. After our discussion, I provided blank food cut outs for us to decorate and asked the kids to help me create a giant food pyramid for the office. It looks awesome! The kids are so much fun to work with and I am always re-energized for my week after spending some time with them on Saturday. They are always so excited and ready to learn. On another positive note, we had two new visitors and they plan on returning for our October 16th session! Their grandmother even offered to help us publicize the clinic and program! I’m really looking forward to seeing even more new faces next time.
The new site is located within FHCCGLA’s defined service delivery area will serve the same target population, uninsured and vulnerable community residents. There are large numbers of residents living at or below the poverty level in census tracts surrounding the new service delivery location. FHCCGLA has/will enter into a 10-year lease for the new health center location. The addition of the DFHCC was approved by FHCCGLA’s board of directors in June 2010.
The new service delivery site will operate under the auspices of FHCCGLA in collaboration with Downey Regional Medical Center (DRMC). The DFHCC site blends two mutually beneficial objectives of providing access to health services for low-income and uninsured populations while serving as a training site for the next generation of health care practitioners, many of whom choose to continue to practice in underserved communities beyond their training.