Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System’s spearheading efforts to bring the Blue Zones Project to Monterey County have now become a reality

Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System’s spearheading efforts to bring the Blue Zones Project to Monterey County have now become a reality

img_20190130_1829459697e2 Pete Delgado, President/CEO of Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System

By: Ernesto Altamirano

SALINAS, CA – On Wednesday, January 30, several community leaders gathered at the CSUMB Salinas Center for Arts and Culture to celebrate the official announcement of the Blue Zones Project initiative in Monterey County. At this celebration, team members of the Blue Zones Project and local stakeholders provided detailed insights into the community-focused plan whose purpose is to create a healthier Monterey County, starting with Salinas.

screenshot_20190131-1019087e2Initial community presentation of the Blue Zones Project by SVMHS, August 2018

The Blue Zones project was locally spearheaded by Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System and back in August 2018 they hosted a series of presentations and focus groups to explore the feasibility of launching a local Blue Zones Project and gather the interest of the community.

screenshot_20190131-1019257e2Blue Zones Project focus group planning session at SVMHS, August 2018

Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System’s strong community-centered efforts paid off as now the Blue Zones Project is officially happening in Monterey County and now it counts with the additional sponsorship of Taylor Farms and Montage Health.

img_2443Guests had an opportunity to take home healthy fruits and vegetables

One of the key components of the Blue Zones Projects is to help the community make better food decisions every day by “making the healthy choice the easy choice”, and this was shown in a very practical way during the announcement ceremony at the CSUMB Salinas Center for Arts and Culture as guests were invited to take home a wide array of fruits and vegetables to get them started towards a healthier diet.

As an overview, the Blue Zones Project is a community-led well-being improvement initiative designed to make healthy choices easier through permanent changes to a city’s environment, policy, and social networks. Established in 2010, Blue Zones Project was founded by and is based on research by Dan Buettner, a National Geographic Fellow and New York Times best-selling author who identified five cultures of the world, or blue zones (Ikaria, Greece; Loma Linda, California; Nicoya, Costa Rica; Okinawa, Japan; and Sardinia, Italy), with the highest concentration of people living to 100 years or older.

img_20190130_1829444052Pete Delgado, President/CEO of Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System

And in the words of Pete Delgado, President/CEO of Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System “The Blue Zones Project is a well-being initiative designed to unite communities with a common goal of making healthy choices easier. This initiative draws upon more than 200 evidence-based practices to help community leaders, just like us make sustainable changes in our worksites, schools and environment to promote a culture of health. This isn’t something that we can do alone – it’s going to take all of us in this room working toward the same goal of a healthier community.”

img_20190130_1901508181Michael Acker, SVP General Manager, Blue Zones Project

In order to be able to work together towards this unified goal, Michael Acker, SVP General Manager of the Blue Zones Project, shared a timeline of what the local project is planned to look like, which can be found below:

Screenshot_20190131-141839_2

img_20190130_184921021_hdr7e2You can also be a part of the Blue Zones Project!

A key element of the Blue Zones Project is community participation, that’s why you’re invited to click this link for more information and find out how you can also be involved: https://info.bluezonesproject.com/blue-zones-project-salinas

 

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