On Saturday, June
1, community members from across the Allina Health service area joined
Allina Health employee volunteers to package 200,000 healthy meals for
neighbors in need. More than 1,800 volunteers total worked together at 40
Allina Health locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin. At Owatonna
Hospital, 36 community and Allina Health volunteers packed 1,400 meals
More than 75 nonprofit organizations throughout the
Allina Health service area were recipients of the healthy meal packs,
which included a "Healthful Eating on a Budget" brochure with recipes.
"It's inspirational to see this many people volunteering for the good of
our community," said Penny Wheeler, MD, chief clinical officer of Allina
Health. "I'm so proud to be part of this work."
"100 percent of the
1,400 meals packed at Owatonna Hospital last Saturday stayed in the
community and went to the Steele County Food Shelf," said Natalie Ginter,
manager of community engagement and development. "Allina Medical Clinics in
Faribault and Northfield also packed and distributed 2,100 meals to
four non-profits in Rice County."
The 200,000 meals were donated to
more than 75 community organizations, including food shelves, shelters,
schools and religious organizations, throughout Minnesota and western
Wisconsin. Allina Health purchased more than a quarter million pounds of
food for the project. Each meal pack assembled by volunteers included cans
of black beans, corn, diced tomatoes, chicken and a bag of brown
rice-enough to feed four.
Apply for a Neighborhood Health
Connection grant to fund your group's healthy activity
The June 1 event also kicked off the 2013 Neighborhood Health Connection
program. Allina Health will award grants to groups or
organizations who submit ideas for bringing people together to do healthy
activities. The purpose of the Healthy Activity Grants is to support group
activities that promote social connections and increase healthy behaviors
(healthy eating, active living).
Online applications will
be accepted now through June 14. Winners will be announced via email on
Free resources available
neighborhoodhealthconnection.org to download free resources, including a
Toolkit that gives people additional support to form stronger connections
with their neighbors. It offers ideas about how to form a neighborhood
group and tips on how to organize activities.