Featured Stories


Awards cap annual health week in Hillsboro

Studnick On Valentine’s Day, when greeting card aisles at area grocery stores were crowded with people hoping to impress their sweethearts, Sierra Studnick had condoms on her mind.

Specifically, the Pacific University junior was planning for “Condom Con,” a sexual health awareness fair that played out in the University Center on the Forest Grove campus Feb. 14.

“We set up games related to healthy sexual habits,” said Studnick, who hails from Madras, Ore. “The idea was for people to have fun with interactive activities while they were learning.”

About 50 attendees played “Pin The Condom On The Man” and “Test Your Sexually Transmitted Infections Knowledge.” They also registered to win prize baskets that included educational pamphlets and “condom bouquets,” noted Studnick, who’s president of the university’s Public Health Club.

Her efforts paid off this month when she learned she had won an award from the Washington County Department of Health and Human Services.

National Public Health Week is April 7-13. On Friday, April 11, department officials will present the 12th Annual Public Health Recognition Awards.

The event is open to the public and takes place at 1 p.m. in the Public Services Building auditorium, located at 155 N. First Ave. in Hillsboro. A reception will follow.

“It feels pretty cool to be recognized for what I’m doing,” said Studnick, 20. “It inspires me to do more.”

Kaely Summers, nutrition and market access coordinator for the Forest Grove nonprofit Adelante Mujeres, will also be among the honorees. Her “Nourish the Community” initiative, begun in 2012, offers wellness activities for Adelante employees, its board of directors and the community at large. Summers

From cooking and nutrition classes for adults to an emphasis on healthy, local foods at the Forest Grove Farmers Market, Summers’ program has a long reach. “We’re updating our worksite wellness policies to better serve our staff,” she said.

Flexible schedules for employees “so they can get out and walk on their lunch hours,” monthly staff potlucks featuring healthy choices and Community Supported Agriculture access for employees are among the changes. “We looked at all our programs to see how we could integrate health and wellness across the board,” Summers said.

Sonrise Church in Hillsboro was also selected for an award. In March, Sonrise’s food pantry served 270 families, said staff member Heather Brown. The church operates a severe-weather shelter during the winter; provides community garden space for Hillsboro residents living in apartments or condominiums; pays for life-sustaining prescriptions for those who can’t afford them; and provides financial assistance for people facing utility cut-off or eviction notices, among other efforts.

A partial list of award winners follows:

n The Public Health Ambassador Award recognizes an individual who has “raised awareness of public health issues, developed projects with a lasting impact, and/or influenced systems or policy changes,” according to Wendy Gordon, communications coordinator for the WCDHHS. Summers will be honored for building a culture of wellness for “Nourish the Community” participants, Adelante Mujeres staff and volunteers and the broader Washington County community.

n The Partner in Public Health Award recognizes an organization/business that has developed innovative public health programs that positively affect its employees and/or the community at-large. Sonrise Church will be honored for “programs that are designed to improve the emotional and physical well-being of Washington County’s most vulnerable residents,” said Gordon.

n The Emerging Public Health Leader Award recognizes a youth or youth-related group who promotes healthy communities and making healthy lifestyle choices. Studnick will be honored for her “strong public health leadership on the Pacific University campus and civic engagement in the Forest Grove community,” Gordon said.




Local Weather

Cloudy

48°F

Hillsboro

Cloudy

Humidity: 89%

Wind: 10 mph

  • 19 Dec 2014

    Rain 50°F 46°F

  • 20 Dec 2014

    Rain 54°F 53°F