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Company : Northgate Gonzalez Market
Program category : 2017


Northgate Gonzalez Market, (NGM) updates on the growing Viva La Salud, (VLS) Program has proven to be recognized and trusted Supermarket Champion of Health & Wellness to the communities we serve. VLS has expanded networking efforts on developing, organizing, promoting and running average of 200+ in-store free health events per quarter. These efforts are supported by multiple nonprofits, health providers, school districts and county programs to bring education to customers and associates on chronic diseases, nutrition, free health screenings and wellness resources within the community. VLS is developing and growing wellness grants creatively to help support health programs within our stores and communities we serve. Another focus area of the program is to promote healthier products in store with our bilingual nutrition tags at shelf level, cooking classes, store tours and healthy checkout aisles.  These combined efforts have helped our stores become community health portals.


VLS has supported the expansion of new pilot store healthy checkout aisles in partnership with Choose Health LA Kids grantees, please see video. VLS department coordinated a USDA/UCSD $3.4 million grant that increases affordable healthy food access to member if the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), just completed our first year. We sponsor and participate in over ten community partner 5K events annually. At many of the 5K events we build associate teams to run/walk with our families. In addition, at 5K events we sponsor registration fees for school teams and community groups. Hosted our 6th annual Cooking up Change, (CUC) competition to help high school students advocate for healthy school lunches, our team from La Habra High School won 5th national championship in June 2017. Monthly store events include free health screenings, cooking classes, cooking demos, and store tours. This year we have hosted 19 in store mammogram/breast exam events completely free for women who qualify, an additional 36 outreach/educational events.  We promote bilingual weekly wellness events in our ad/circular with health messages and partner contact information.    


VLS is a program helps introduce healthier products and improve healthy food choice of consumers.  Encourage healthy eating and promote better health with community partners and grants. VLS staff sit on various community boards to help fight childhood obesity and chronic diseases. VLS impacts public health by creating innovative ways to bring healthy messaging, opportunities and education to where people shop and live. Our stores becoming trusted community health portals.


The USDA/UCSD grant is providing financial incentives on fruits and vegetables, special produce promotions and in-store cooking classes, tours and food labeling education. This innovative program is providing researchers with important data to understand healthy purchasing behaviors. Under CUC culinary program we started our first culinary internship program for our Cocina departments with the students in our stores this year, its been very successful. We are also providing culinary scholarships to these students. The annual fundraising for Susan G Komen in October for breast cancer has grown to over $80,000 to provide additional free mammograms in the communities of Southern California. Our partners in grants keeps growing each year, showing positive results for all partners especially the community benefits. VLS has influence in the media and public relations hosting various County Public Health Press Conferences at store level annually, highlighting program at conferences and as VLS program is so diverse and valuable free onsite store events and services inevitably attract positive press.   


"NGM has a long-standing and life-saving partnership with Susan G. Komen.  Several times a year, this generous company allows Komen to be on site at many stores throughout Southern California to provide free mammograms to the women who shop its aisles.  Together, we have provided several thousand free mammograms and saved hundreds of lives. Truly, NGM does “viva la salud.”  - Shaina Gross, President & CEO, Susan G. Komen San Diego

"Champions for Health is greatly appreciative of the partnership we have with NGM to improve the health of community members, often those most vulnerable.  Over the past few years, NGM has hosted breast cancer screenings, blood pressure screenings and immunization clinics with us.  By immunizing just one person in a multi-generational household, we know we may have prevented serious illness or even death in the family.  And many women who do not have a regular physician have received their very first mammogram at a NGM because we are there in their neighborhood.  NGM has also helped us spread the word about eating better and taking control of your health at our Sunset 5K focused on reducing the risk of diabetes, a huge health issue in San Diego County." - Barbara Mandel, CEO, Champions for Health

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