CA Department of Public Health names Providence Wellness and Activity Center a leader in health innovation

February 27, 2017

Let’s Get Healthy California recognizes center as a lead in the Living Well category

The Providence Wellness and Activity Center in Wilmington Calif., was named today as a leader in innovative programming that supports the Let’s Get Healthy California initiative to make California the nation’s healthiest state by 2022.

The Providence Wellness and Activity Center, a community benefit project sponsored Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Centers in Torrance and San Pedro, was one of 12 finalists chosen for this recognition by the California Health and Human Services Agency and the state Department of Public Health. To learn more about how the center supports Wilmington residents of all ages visit the Innovation Challenge 2.0 Showcase.

The center competed against nearly 100 submissions from community, health, and advocates, health care, non-profit and faith-based organizations as well as visionary practitioners.

The Innovation Challenge 2.0 focused on what are called the “social determinants of health” defined as the conditions in which people are born and live. Some of these social determinants include safe housing, hunger, poverty, quality of education, lack of jobs and exposure to crime and violence.

Jim Tehan, regional director of community partnerships, led the development of the program, one of numerous community benefit programs initiated to help vulnerable populations.

“The center in Wilmington - is a symbol of our commitment to create healthier communities outside of the hospitals’ walls,” said Tehan. “We’re honored to be recognized by the Departments of Human Services and Public Health and hope to share our work and inspire other organizations and communities to effectively leverage resources.”

The center is a 10,000-square-foot complex that includes a soccer field, outdoor basketball court, gymnasium and meeting space for large and small community meetings. Children and adults in Wilmington now have a vibrant physical space - in what was once a neighborhood with few resources - that promotes social connections among residents, reduces social isolation and links children and adults with programs and resources that help them make healthier life choices. The center’s work is reliant on the strong partnerships with many organizations, most notably the partnerships with Mercy Housing and Abode Communities.

Our complementary programs include daily exercise programs: Zumba®, aerobics and walking groups, assistance with applications: Medi-Cal, Covered California and CalFresh, referrals to other local recourses and ongoing health and wellness classes.