Education at Grameen VidaSana: Weight Management Group/Grupo de Manejando el Peso
Since its inception, Grameen VidaSana (GVS) has worked to improve the health of our members through providing primary care, preventive treatment and health education. One part of the program that reflects this idea is the Weight Management Group, or Grupo de Manejando el Peso. The weekly conversation group of 10 to 20 members, led by a GVS health coach, often involves cooking demonstrations that follow healthy recipe options and introduces members to new and healthier ingredients.
The most recent class featured recipes for homemade tomato sauce with eggplant, sautéed bok choy, and bulgur. The members who attended were thrilled with the recipes, and several mentioned that it was the first time trying at least one of these foods. In addition, our health coach was able to improvise her use of kitchen tools, allowing a teaching point for members about flexibility and creativity in cooking.
Cooking demonstrations are designed to be both accessible and educational, using everyday materials, tools and ingredients that are easily found in the Jackson Heights community. This time around, participants were so motivated that they offered to bring their own recipes to the next demonstration in order to find ways to make those recipes healthier.
We are so happy to be able to share these ideas and lessons with the women of Grameen VidaSana! Click here for photos from the most recent demonstration.
Spotlight On: Grameen VidaSana's Health Coaches
Our health program is designed to provide its members the very best care, including treatment both medical and personal. With this in mind, the GVS team model includes health coaches, or “companeras de salud,” who are women from the Queens community who have been trained to work alongside our primary care physician to provide members with any assistance they may need, as well as a more personalized health and wellness plan. Health coach responsibilities include being accessible to patients 24/7 and tracking their progress; proactively reaching out to patients they think may need assistance; helping patients secure referrals and outside appointments; leading weekly group conversations on specific health topics; and much more!
We’ve recently begun a brief video series to share a bit more about each of these wonderful women and the amazing work they do each day at Grameen VidaSana. We hope you enjoy!
Martha emigrated from Ecuador in 1993, and was forced to leave her four year old daughter behind until 2001, when she was able to return to her home country and bring her back to the US. Today she lives with her husband and two daughters, along with six other people, in a four-bedroom apartment.
For a living Martha cleans houses and babysits, and as such does not have access to health insurance. She came to Grameen VidaSana this past February for a primary care visit, where a blood test showed that she has diabetes. Although Martha had been tested before at one of the city’s public hospitals, her work schedule prevented her from attending her follow-up visits or beginning treatment.
Today, Martha is an active member of GVS! Thanks to the program she is controlling her diabetes and her sugar levels are normalizing. In addition, she is losing weight, improving her overall health and increasing her energy. Because of the flexibility of the Grameen VidaSana schedule and the 24/7 availability of her health coach, Martha has not missed an appointment since and is keeping on top of her health and her goals.
We are so proud of her amazing work, and we thank you for helping to make this important program available to women like Martha!
82nd Street Partnership
Grameen VidaSana is happy to announce we are now featured on the 82nd Street Partnership's website! This inclusion is an honor and a testament to our program becoming a prominent part of our neighborhood and community. To read more, please click here.