Sunday, April 1, 2018

Bronx Health REACH Acknowledges NYC Council Members Support of Health Bucks

At the March 2nd Coalition meeting, Bronx Health REACH acknowledged NY City Council members Fernando Cabrera (on left in photo above), Vanessa L. Gibson, Rafael Salamanca, Jr. and Ritchie Torres who, from their respective budgets, collectively allocated $43,000 towards Health Bucks. Developed and distributed by the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Health Bucks are paper vouchers worth $2 each that shoppers use to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables at farmers' market. Appearing at the meeting, Council member Cabrera spoke about the time an angiogram revealed he had a blocked artery and needed to have surgery, otherwise he would have had only twenty-four hours to live. That incident made Council member Cabrera change his eating habits and now he is a vegan with lower blood pressure. He urged all to join in fighting for healthy eating, especially for Bronx children.

 Aicha Bamba (in photo above on the right of Bronx Health REACH Director Charmaine Ruddock) accepted on behalf of Council member Ritchie Torres and John Zaccaro Jr. accepted on behalf of Rafael Salamanca, Jr. Mr. Zaccaro stated that Council Member Salamanca is pledging $50,000 towards Health Bucks in the upcoming FY 19 budget. From 2015 to 2017 Bronx Health REACH assisted 20 churches to distribute 4475 Health Bucks. From 2016 to 2017 600 Health Bucks were distributed to patients at 3 Institute for Family Health centers. The patients redeemed them during 15 farmers' market tours and a Fresh Food Box program.

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