Grand opening highlights free weekly food pantry in collaboration with God's Pantry for El Monte community
EL MONTE, Calif., May 6, 2022 -- L.A. Care Health Plan and Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan today are celebrating the grand opening of their Community Resource Center in El Monte at 3570 Santa Anita Avenue with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
A host of other free services are available to members and the general public at the Center, including fitness classes such as Zumba and yoga, mental health and stigma workshops, healthy cooking sessions and health education classes, as well as resources that address social determinants of health such as housing, food security, income security, and more. Its weekly food pantry, where anyone from the community can pick up free groceries on a first come, first served basis, is open every Wednesday between 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.
The 12,000-square-foot Center provides L.A. Care and Blue Shield Promise members with personalized services, including help with care management, free Wi-Fi and private rooms to support virtual medical visits, member services, and benefit navigation.
"We are committed to offering local health and social services that can positively impact the health and well-being of our members and the community," said Kristen Cerf, president and CEO of Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan. "That includes addressing food insecurity, which has been exacerbated during the pandemic in many communities, making hunger a persistent problem with health repercussions. We're helping to address that issue directly by offering a free weekly food pantry at this Center."
The new location is the latest addition in the $146 million commitment the two health plans made to open 14 jointly operated Community Resource Centers. The goal is to help improve the lives of members and the communities where they live all across Los Angeles County.
"At L.A. Care, we understand that health care should be more than just an ID card in your wallet. That's why we're thrilled to have our one-stop community hub serve the diverse communities of the San Gabriel Valley to keep them active, healthy and informed," said John Baackes, L.A. Care CEO. "This Center's offerings are designed to empower people with free classes and practical, on-the-spot resources that aim to improve total quality of life."
While the Center has been available to local residents since September 2021, the grand opening celebration took place today due to previous COVID-19 restrictions. Local leaders and representatives, who attended the grand opening included Sandra Armenta representing California State Senator Susan Rubio, Cameron Griffin representing California State Assembly member Blanca Rubio's office, and Anthony Cespedes representing Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis' office. The festivities included a ribbon-cutting, tours of the Center and performances by a mariachi band and Chinese lion dancers, honoring the music and dance traditions of various El Monte residents.
The L.A. Care/Blue Shield Promise Community Resource Center in El Monte is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. To learn more about the Community Resource Centers, please visit activehealthyinformed.org or click here for specific information about the El Monte location.
About Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan
Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan is a managed care organization, wholly owned by Blue Shield of California, offering Medi-Cal and Cal MediConnect. It is led by healthcare professionals with a "members-first" philosophy and committed to building a quality network of providers and partnering with community organizations for more than 400,000 members. For more information about Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan, please visit www.blueshieldca.com/promise. For more news about Blue Shield of California, please visit www.news.blueshieldca.com. Or follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook.
About L.A. Care Health Plan
L.A. Care Health Plan serves more than 2.5 million members in Los Angeles County, making it the largest publicly operated health plan in the country. L.A. Care offers four health coverage plans including Medi-Cal, L.A. Care Covered™, L.A. Care Cal MediConnect Plan and the PASC-SEIU Homecare Workers Health Care Plan, all dedicated to being accountable and responsive to members. As a public entity, L.A. Care’s mission is to provide access to quality health care for L.A. County's low-income communities, and to support the safety net required to achieve that purpose. L.A. Care prioritizes quality, access and inclusion, elevating health care for all of L.A. County. For more information, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.