Dr. Bill Thomas’ Changing Aging Tour comes to San Jose

CHANGING AGING TOUR—Our culture tells us that aging will change us against our will, and for the worse. Internationally acclaimed longevity expert Dr. Bill Thomas argues that this is false. Blending myth and science, live music and visuals, Dr. Bill Thomas’ Changing Aging Tour is a modern day American Chautauqua barnstorming the country in a rock n’ roll tour bus to bring communities a new and highly disruptive understanding of aging.

Drawing on ancient wisdom and scientific breakthroughs, the Changing Aging Tour challenges audience members to reject ageist stereotypes and embrace the moments of life that offer the greatest risk, reward and possibility. The Tour includes two non-fiction theater performances as well as an immersive lobby experience. In the afternoon Disrupt Dementia features music and stories from Samite, Nate Silas Richardson and Namarah McCall and co-hosts Dr. Jennifer Carson and Kyrié Carpenter. The evening performance is Dr. Thomas’ signature show Aging: Life’s Most Dangerous Game with musician Nate Silas Richardson.

“Aging can be reimagined as a vivid and enlivening process that presents us with extraordinary risks, and rewards,” Dr. Thomas says. “So, how are we supposed to play this most dangerous of all games? What do winning and losing look like?”

WHAT: Changing Aging Tour

WHEN: Wednesday, April 5th – 2:30 pm and 7 pm

WHERE: Montgomery Theatre. 271 S Market St, San Jose, California 95113

TICKETS: Tickets of events can purchased online at ChangingAging.org

SPONSORS: Kaiser Permanente, Santa Clara County Department of Aging and Adult Services, M.E. Fox Family Foundation and The Health Trust. AARP, AARP Foundation, Holiday Retirement, Milo and Convivium

The Health Trust commits to helping San Jose flood victims

Like everyone, The Health Trust was saddened by the recent floods and the terrible impact felt by our neighbors. As an organization, The Health Trust has a commitment to supporting our community’s most vulnerable residents, and in the wake of the devastating floods, many of these residents have faced unimaginable losses.  Many families hit were already struggling to get by, and are now faced with rebuilding their lives.

During these difficult times, those affected by the floods are in need of immediate assistance as they embark on the long road of rebuilding their lives. In an effort to support some of their immediate needs, The Health Trust has committed to matching donations made by staff, Board, and supporters, dollar for dollar, up to $10,000.

Those interested in donating, can make a donation by visiting our Support San Jose Flood Victims Donation Page. Donations made by Friday, March 10th, will be matched dollar for dollar, with 100$ of donations going to flood victims. Donations will be equally split between Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County, and CommUniverCity San Jose. Both of these groups are working directly with the schools and families most affected by the flood.

Please join The Health Trust in supporting our community during this challenging time.

*Photos are courtesy of Craig Rose and Chris Mead, Emergency Photographers for the San Jose Fire Department.

Funding Opportunity: Getting to Zero Mini-Grants

As of 2015 there were over 2700 people living with a diagnosis of HIV/AIDS in Santa Clara County. Additionally from data for the State of California, it is estimated that another 9% of persons with HIV are unaware of their infection. In Santa Clara County alone, the incidence of HIV increased by 20% from 2013 to 2014, with the concern that the number of new infections may continue to rise if not effectively addressed.

To impede this rise, The Health Trust is collaborating with the Santa Clara County Public Health Department and other partners on a new initiative called Getting to Zero (GTZ)The initiative aims to have “zero new HIV infections, zero deaths from HIV, and zero stigma related to HIV.” On February 9, 2016, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors accepted a report to operationalize this the Getting to Zero initiative. The Health Trust was selected as the lead agency on this effort over the next four years to coordinate related work throughout the 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, which led to the priority strategies described below

An important component of the initiative includes awarding mini-grants in the amount of $100,000 per year over the next four years to promote community agencies’ ability to recognize and respond to the greatest needs within their scope of work. The Health Trust seeks to collaborate with community-based organizations, public agencies, clinics, schools and other groups to award one-time mini-grants in support of the GTZ campaign and the four priority focus areas listed below.

Separate applications will be released for health care provider organizations and other types of organizations. Mini-grants may be used to support health care providers in establishing infrastructure related to supporting universal screening, effective referral mechanisms for HIV Providers, PrEP implementation, and stigma reduction. Mini-grants to non-clinical organizations may similarly support these four strategies in community-based settings, including but not limited to clinics, schools, and non-profit organizations. In addition to the aforementioned strategies, The Health Trust will consider other innovative strategies and activities that address the broader goals of Getting to Zero.

The priority focus areas and strategies revolve around the following:

  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

Grant Amount Range and Allowable Expenses
Grant awards will range from $1,500 – $20,000 with a total of $100,000 for this round of funding, $50,000 of which may go to clinical organizations and $50,000 to non-clinical organizations. Grant funds are to be used for the planning, staffing, materials, supplies, outreach and marketing needed to address any of the GTZ priority areas.

Key Dates 
Application Release Date:          Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Application Due Date:                Wednesday, March 15, 2017 by 5PM

Grant Award Announced:            Monday, April 3, 2017

Project Timeframe:                    April 3, 2017-June 30, 2017

Proposal Eligibility Criteria

  • Projects must directly benefit residents of Santa Clara County
  • Proposals must be completed and all costs incurred by June 30, 2017

Application Instructions
Interested applicants must have an online account created in order to submit the full proposal. If you do not have an existing account, please click here to create an account.

Upon creating an account, click here to access the proposal.

Please e-mail questions related to this funding announcement to Maria Garcia at MariaG@healthtrust.org

Applications are due on  Wednesday, March 15, 2017 at 5pm

Grant Monitoring and Reporting

Grantees will be required to submit a final grant report 30 days upon the completion of the mini-grant project.

Download a PDF copy of this announcement.

The Health Trust Meals On Wheels participates in March for Meals

Teresa Johnson
The Health Trust Meals On Wheels



 Support will help to fight senior isolation and hunger in silicon valley

San Jose, CA, March 1, 2017 – The Health Trust Meals On Wheels announced today that it will be participating in the 15th annual March for Meals – a month-long, nationwide celebration of Meal on Wheels and the homebound and vulnerable seniors who rely on its vital safety net.

”The services that we provide the seniors of Silicon Valley are critical and the need is rapidly increasing,” said Teresa Johnson, Director of The Health Trust Meals On Wheels. “Together, we can keep seniors living independently, healthier at home and feeling more connected to their community as they age.”

Since 2002, Meals on Wheels America has led the annual awareness campaign in an effort to fill the gap between the seniors served and those in need that is widening due to increased demand with a rapidly aging population combined with declining public and private resources, and rising food, transportation and operational costs. This March, hundreds of local Meals on Wheels programs, like The Health Trust Meals On Wheels, will reach out to their communities to build the support that will enable them to deliver nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks to America’s seniors all year long.

“March is a time for us all to rally around Meals on Wheels,” said Ellie Hollander, President and CEO of Meals on Wheels America. “Our ability to meet the needs of vulnerable seniors lies in the willingness and generosity of businesses, government and concerned individuals of all ages to contribute in their own way. It not only makes economic sense to enable seniors to stay healthy and safe at home, but it improves the health and vibrancy of our communities and our nation at large.”

For more information on how you can volunteer, contribute or speak out for the seniors in Silicon Valley and across the country, visit www.marchformeals.com.

About The Health Trust Meals On Wheels:
The Health Trust Meals On Wheels delivers hot nutritious meals and offers wellness checks to seniors, adults with disabilities and homebound individuals. Roughly 80,000 meals are delivered annually to 568 clients throughout multiple cities in Santa Clara County. The Health Trust Meals On Wheels is a program of 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 www.healthtrust.org.

About Meals on Wheels America:
Meals on Wheels America is the oldest and largest national organization supporting the more than 5,000 community-based senior nutrition programs across the country that are dedicated to addressing senior hunger and isolation. This network exists in virtually every community in America and, along with more than two million volunteers, delivers the nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks that enable America’s seniors to live nourished lives with independence and dignity. By providing funding, leadership, research, education and advocacy support, Meals on Wheels America empowers its local member programs to strengthen their communities, one senior at a time. For more information, or to find a Meals on Wheels provider near you, visit www.mealsonwheelsamerica.org.

The Health Trust recognizes staff at Annual Service Awards Banquet

On Friday, February 17, 2017, the entire Health Trust staff gathered for its Annual Service Awards Banquet. Held at Maggiano’s Little Italy restaurant, the celebration consisted of great food, trivia games, raffle prizes and recognition of staff that reached their 5, 10 and 15 years of service with The Health Trust.

The following staff members were recognized for their commitment to helping us serve the most vulnerable in our community:

15 Years of Service

  • Monica Taina
  • Nancy Waledisch

10 Years of Service

  • Deanne Caraballo
  • Paul Hepfer
  • Jason Liu
  • Cheryl Walter

5 Years of Service

  • Charlene Della Maggiore
  • Misrak Demilew
  • Laurie Kelm
  • Carol Williamson
  • Joseph Yapyuco

Check out photos from the event.

Evergreen School District Family Resource Center Opens

Today, we are thrilled to announce the grand opening of the Evergreen School District Family Resource Center at Katherine R. Smith Elementary!

Members of the community, parents and children, gathered to celebrate the grand opening. Joining them was Cora Tomalinas, FIRST 5 Santa Clara County Commissioner, Charlie Bullock, Interim CEO of The Health Trust, and members of the Evergreen School District, including Aaron Brengard, Principal of Katherine R. Smith Elementary. And it wouldn’t have been a Family Resource Center grand opening without a guest appearance by Potter the Otter.

The Evergreen School District Family Resource Center will be a valued destination for families in the evergreen community, providing an environment where children ages 0-5 and their parents and caregivers can learn and grow together.

Check out photos from the event.

About The Health Trust Family Resource Centers

The Health Trust Family Resource Centers, funded by FIRST 5 Santa Clara County’s Learning Together Initiative and operated in partnership with Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County and SJB Child Development Centers, offer free programs and services designed to strengthen families and promote literacy, proper nutrition, physical activity and skills that growing children need to be ready to succeed in kindergarten.

Santa Clara Valley Water District Implements Community Water Fluoridation

Gustavo Caraveo
The Health Trust


Santa Clara Valley Water District Implements Community Water Fluoridation

San Jose, CA, December 12, 2016 – San Jose joins other major cities in California and the nation in fluoridating its water supply. Starting with its Santa Teresa water treatment plant, which serves East County, the Santa Clara Valley Water District has implemented community water fluoridation.

“We have been treating cavities in kids in our East San Jose dental clinics for years, but it’s not enough,” said Frederick J. Ferrer, former CEO of The Health Trust. “This will give more families the foundation they need. It’s the cornerstone of prevention in oral health.”

The Water District Board voted in 2011 to bring optimal levels of fluoride to their water supplies after testimony from health experts about the benefits of fluoridation, especially for the county’s most vulnerable residents. The Health Trust led the effort before the board, along with the Santa Clara County Department of Public Health, with support from the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, FIRST 5 Santa Clara County, PACT and the Santa Clara County Dental Society.

The Health Trust donated $1 million to help fund the capital costs along with $900,000 from FIRST 5 and $500,000 from the California Dental Association Foundation.

“The dentists have been working toward this for years,” said Dr. John Pisacane, a practicing dentist in Willow Glen. “The benefits of community water fluoridation are well-known, including strengthening enamel and helping to reduce tooth decay in both children and adults by 25 percent.”

Community water supplies in Palo Alto, San Mateo County, San Francisco, and southern Marin have been fluoridated for years. Additionally Santa Clara County residents in portions of Evergreen, Alviso and north San Jose receive fluoridated water. According to the State Water Resources Control Board, almost 64 percent of California residents receive fluoridated water and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates nearly 66 percent of U.S. residents receive the benefits of fluoridation.

“Fluoridation by the Santa Clara Valley Water District is a beginning, but there is more to be done,” said Charlie Bullock, interim CEO of The Health Trust.  “In addition to the Water District, San Jose Water Company wells will require capital installations to fluoridate the groundwater. The Health Trust is looking forward to working with San Jose Water Company to further fluoridation in San Jose,” Bullock said.


Statements of Support from State and Local Leaders

Tooth decay is a common disease in children. Water fluoridation is the single most important step a community can undertake to prevent it.

-State of California Dental Director Jay Kumar

The Santa Clara Valley Water District has responded to a public health priority of Santa Clara County. By optimizing fluoride levels at our three water treatment plants, the dental benefits of fluoridation will reach a large proportion of the community we serve in the most cost-effective way.

-Santa Clara Valley Water District Board Chair John Varela.

Fluoridating San Jose’s water supply is an important investment in the overall health and well-being of our youngest children. Oral health diseases can affect children’s growth, speech development, nutritional intake, and overall quality of life. Community water fluoridation is an effective method to prevent tooth decay and this exciting effort will help more young children in Santa Clara County have a healthy start. 

-FIRST 5 Santa Clara County Chief Executive Officer Jolene Smith

This project will make a difference in the lives of many families and children. Research and studies show that fluoridating public drinking water is not only safe and effective, it is the best method of improving oral health. With the launch of this project, I know that many children and families will have better oral health. I am pleased to support such great efforts for making our communities strong and improving the lives and health of those who need it most.

-Board President Dave Cortese, Santa Clara Board of Supervisors, District 3

The improved dental health that will result from the fluoridation initiative will produce many positive results for the children and families in our community. These include happier children not riddled by tooth decay and pain, increased attendance at school and the confidence children enjoy with a healthy smile. This is an important investment in our community that the Board of Supervisors of Santa Clara County has fully endorsed and supported since its inception.

-Supervisor Cindy Chavez, Santa Clara Board of Supervisors, District 2

Our Board of Supervisors has long been a proponent of community water fluoridation for almost 20 years now. It is simply the safest and most economical way to keep teeth strong and help prevent decay. In the past 70 years, since the widespread introduction of fluoride to community water supplies, there has been a steady and significant decline in cavities in children and adults. The Centers for Disease Control have named community water fluoridation one of ten great public health achievements of the 20th century. I’m delighted we’re finally implementing this important project and bringing safe, effective fluoridation to more Silicon Valley residents.

– Supervisor Joe Simitian, Santa Clara Board of Supervisors, District 5

Studies show that fluoridated water reduces incidence of tooth decay by up to 40% and I’m delighted now that more San Jose residents than ever will begin to receive clean, safe and fluoridated water. I would like to thank the Santa Clara Valley Water District for partnering with a broad coalition of community organizations, led by the Health Trust, to bring our water supply into the 21st century and improve oral health for future generations of San Jose children.

-San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo

The California Dental Association, which represents more than 26,000 member dentists, and it’s philanthropic foundation, have long recognized and supported the dental disease prevention benefits of community water fluoridation. Scientific evidence has proven that families with access to water fluoridation experience reduced dental disease, leading to healthier lives. We applaud Santa Clara Valley Water District’s commitment to optimally fluoridate its three treatment plants, and remain excited and committed to seeing water fluoridation completed throughout the county.

-California Dental Association Foundation Chair, Jean Creasey, DDS

We recognize the role employers play in achieving greater health equity and increasing the quality of life of the entire community. Water fluoridation is a common sense approach to providing high quality dental health and ensures that prosperity continues to smile on Silicon Valley.

– Silicon Valley Leadership Group Senior Director of Health Policy Alexandria Felton

This is an important step in improving health for all people living in Santa Clara County. More than 70 years of scientific research has shown that an optimal level of fluoride in community water is safe and effective in preventing tooth decay. Simply by drinking water, residents benefit from fluoride, whether they are at home, work or school.

-County of Santa Clara Health Officer Sara Cody