Food for Everyone makes strides with “Senior Bites”

“Tell them I said yes to helping seniors and hopefully they will too,” said Mahesh Pajwani, owner of Chaat Cafe.

As we continue to apply our Food for Everyone findings to fill gaps in food security in San Jose, we’ve partnered with organizations such as Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County to tackle the problem for vulnerable communities. One such community is low-income seniors.

Since November 2016, a pilot program funded by The Health Trust called San Jose Senior Bites Network has been targeting local restaurants to participate in a network which provides healthy and affordable food options for seniors.

We are happy to announce that Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County has established a community of restaurants who have adopted the concept and joined our effort to increase food accessibility for seniors. We thank Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County for partnering with us, and restaurant owners of Chaat Cafe, Spice n Flavor, My Phở Noodle House, Chili & Lime, and Main St. Bagel.


AmeriCorps VISTA members recognized by Mayor Liccardo

Today is National Service Recognition Day, and that means some of The Health Trust’s own made an appearance at San Jose City Hall to be recognized by Mayor Sam Liccardo. Our two AmeriCorps VISTA members, Christine Chow and Lenae Stevens, have been working at The Health Trust since September 2016.

At The Health Trust foundation office, Christine Chow supports our Food for Everyone work. Thanks to her hours of research, number-crunching, and PowerPoint presentation prowess, The Health Trust has made great progress toward increasing healthy food access for families and seniors in affordable housing. Christine says her favorite thing about The Health Trust is the diversity of issues surrounding health that it works on.

Lenae Stevens is based at The Jerry Larson FOODBasket, where she supports the daily operations and brings efficiency to the FOODBasket’s volunteer coordination. She’s also the FOODBasket’s social media and newsletter manager.​ ​Since Lenae has been on board with the FOODBasket, she has coordinated with hundreds of volunteers, including Meals On Wheels drivers.

AmeriCorps VISTA is a 1-year national service program run by the Corporation for National and Community Service that places hardworking volunteers at nonprofits across the country. Over 4,520 local leaders, who together represent 194 million citizens, agree that national service works. And VISTA members are set apart because they work “behind the scenes” to build their organizations’ capacity to alleviate poverty.

The Health Trust and its three partner organizations in the Silicon Valley HealthCorps, Sacred Heart Community Services, Second Harvest Food Bank, and Veggielution, benefit from the great work of our seven VISTA members to increase access to healthy food in low-income areas.

We thank Christine and Lenae for their service!

The Health Trust awards first round of Getting to Zero Mini-Grants


April 4, 2017

Dena Dickinson
Health Trust

The Health Trust Awards First Round of Getting to Zero Mini-Grants

San Jose, CA – The HIV epidemic is affecting family and loved ones worldwide. Advocates all over the world and locally here in the heart of Silicon Valley are striving to fight this disease.

In Santa Clara County alone, there are over 2,700 people living with a diagnosis of HIV/AIDS since 2015, and the incidence of HIV increased by 20% from 2013 to 2014. Data from the state of California also shows that 9% of persons with HIV are unaware of their infection.

The number of new infections may continue to rise if not effectively addressed. In an effort to fight HIV, The Health Trust is collaborating with the Santa Clara County Public Health Department and community partners on a new initiative called Getting to Zero (GTZ).

This initiative was funded by Santa Clara County under the leadership of Supervisor Ken Yeager and aims to have “zero new HIV infections, zero deaths from HIV, and zero stigma related to HIV.”

Over the next four years, The Health Trust will serve as the lead agency on this effort and will coordinate GTZ efforts throughout the County. An important component of the initiative includes awarding mini-grants in the amount of $100,000 per year over the next four years to community-based organizations, public agencies, clinics, schools and/or other groups in support of the GTZ campaign and these four priority focus areas:

1. PrEP and PeP Implementation
2. Universal, comprehensive STD Screening and Targeted Testing
3. Initiation of Care and Retention in Care
4. Reduction of Stigma

Micheal Wright, Co-Chair of the mini-grant committee at Facebook, and The Health Trust, announced the first year grant awardees early this week. “It is exciting that we were able to fund such a diverse group of organizations and projects for this first year of this initiative. This is the type of effort needed in a community to help us meet these important goals.”

This year’s mini-grant recipients are:

Asian Americans for Community Involvement of Santa Clara County: Goal is to reduce stigma among Latino communities. Project: public messaging ad campaign.

Billy DeFrank LGBTQ Community Center: Goal is to reduce stigma among gay, MSM, transgender folks, lesbians, and the leather/kinky community. Project: Host Celebrating Sexuality workshops that provide education about PrEP and prevention.

Colectivo Acción Latina de Ambiente (ALA): Goal is to promote PrEP use and reduce stigma for Latino gay men. Project: Telenovela web series to deliver message about PrEP as a prevention option and address the issue of stigma in Latino community.

Community Health Partnership: Goal is to increase STD/HIV screening and testing among the Community Health Partnership network of clinics. Project: incorporation of HIV Quality Measures into CHP consortium Dashboard to make screening and testing more a more routine part of health care.

Office of Community Health, Stanford University School of Medicine, Packard Children’s Hospital Adolescent Health: Goal is to prevent new infections and detecting HIV infection early. Project: Getting to a Tipping Point: Scaling Up Youth Services for Comprehensive STD/HIV Testing and PrEP through the Stanford Teen Health Van.

Roots Community Health Center, South Bay: Goal is reduce infections and provide early detection for HIV among African descent adults. Project: to develop infrastructure for PrEP and PEP administration and universal comprehensive STD/HIV screening and testing in the Roots Community Health Center South Bay Clinic.

For more information or how you can collaborate with us, please contact us at


About The Health Trust
The Health Trust is an operating foundation founded in 1996. Since then, it has been a catalyst for community partnerships that identify health challenges and work to find innovative solutions. The Health Trust provides grants, engages in policy and education and continues its legacy of providing health services to make Silicon Valley healthier for everyone. For more information, visit

About Getting to Zero
On February 9, 2016, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors accepted a report to operationalize the Getting to Zero initiative. The Health Trust was selected as the lead agency on this effort for Santa Clara County. The recommendations for operationalization included a collective impact planning process with a preliminary assessment, as well as a best practice review and engagement of a wide range of stakeholders in order to identify and develop goals, objectives, and strategies. The initiative aims to have “zero new HIV infections, zero deaths from HIV, and zero stigma related to HIV.” For more information, visit

2017-04 Getting to Zero Mini-Grants press release

Our Destination: Home team member Chad Bojorquez gets his wheels

For the first time in his life, 37-year-old Chad Bojorquez is licensed to drive a car on his own. And not just any car—the San Jose man was the recipient of a specialized van complete with a wheelchair lift and hand controls.

A group of San Jose civic leaders started a fundraising effort last year that raised $78,000 to make the dream a reality.

“It’s very freeing to be able to drive,” he said. “Just the freedom go wherever.”

When the appropriately-named fundraising campaign, “Wheels for Chad,” was started a little over a year ago, Bojorquez was a project director at Downtown Streets Team. In his management role at the nonprofit, which works to secure jobs and housing for the homeless, Bojorquez spent hours daily on public transportation to fulfill his various responsibilities in the South Bay.

The result was a lot of valuable time lost.

“The morning could be in Palo Alto, the middle of the day could be in San Jose and the end of the day could be in Sunnyvale,” Bojorquez said in an interview with NBC Bay Area last June.

For the father of three young kids, with another on the way, the van will do much more than alleviate his daily commute time. Bojorquez now works for Destination: Home, a program of the Health Trust,

Bojorquez also now thoroughly enjoys what many might call a mundane task: morning drop-off.

Earlier this month, he drove his son to school by himself for the first time ever.

“That’s a huge deal, a short little drive,” he said. “It’s the normal things.”

The “Wheels for Chad” campaign was started by San Jose resident Julie Matsushima, a longtime advocate for the disabled. In May 2015, Matsushima’s efforts culminated in the grand opening of the Rotary Playgarden, an accessible playground inspired by her granddaughter Aimee.

After hearing about Bojorquez’s dilemma, she and a team of women started the “Wheels for Chad” campaign through her nonprofit, That’s Amore. The group held fundraisers and solicited donations online, ultimately raising the money and presenting Bojorquez with a check last June.

View original report on NBC Bay Area.

Interim CEO: Meals On Wheels is here to stay

Dear staff,

As many of us have heard by now, the President’s 2018 budget blueprint threatens to cut funding for the Community Development Block Grant program, which would directly affect Meals On Wheels. In the last 24 hours, our Meals On Wheels staff have received numerous calls from clients — will our program dissolve? The answer is NO, it will not dissolve!!!

We will continue to serve our seniors and individuals who are homebound in Santa Clara County. Our clients depend on us, and their need for our support is as pressing as ever.
As we closely monitor the news, we will do all we can to prepare for how the budget may be enacted. This means we will strengthen partnerships, push for more awareness, recruit more volunteers, and increase donor support, to protect our program from the potential impact of the budget.

These times will be challenging, but we will stay vigilant and informed. Our message to the community is one of strength and solidarity.

Here are a few sites that will provide even more detailed information about what has been proposed:

CNN article from Thursday morning
Washington Post article with program analysis
Meals On Wheels America Statement on Budget Blueprint

And, here are ways that you and others can support our Meals On Wheels:


I hope you all have a nice weekend. Thanks for everything that you do for The Heath Trust to provide services and support to so many people.

-Charlie Bullock

Turkey Trot raises $255,500 for Better Choices, Better Health

The 12th Annual Applied Materials Silicon Valley Turkey Trot raised $255,500 for The Health Trust!

We are honored to be part of a healthy, community-building event that gives back. Through proceeds from the famous Thanksgiving-day race, we are able to directly impact the lives of those living with chronic conditions by supporting and expanding evidence-based self-management programs like Better Choices, Better Health.

Thank you to Silicon Valley Leadership Group Foundation for having us as a beneficiary!