Health & Wellness

Our Healthy Connections Initiative is incorporated in all areas of programming at both our Portola and Excelsior sites. This initiative provides workshops and activities on four overarching areas of health: nutrition/healthy eating, exercise, disease prevention, and mental health.  Family Connections hosts interns from other health organizations including San Francisco State University, City College of San Francisco and UC San Francisco to provide health related education and information to participants of all ages.

Check out our calendar for upcoming workshops, exercise classes, and events.

Programs offered at P = Portola; E = Excelsior; P & E = Portola and Excelsior

Exercise Programs (P & E)

Because of the vital need to increase exercise for overall health, Family Connections offers exercise classes and physical activity opportunities for all our participants to help them recognize and find the balance between eating well and keeping their bodies active and in shape. Adult exercise classes range from Yoga to Zumba, to Tai Chi and Chair Yoga, and exercise for children is standard throughout all of our programs.

Foods for a Healthy Life (P)

Family Connections has designed this program to provide information and tools that support our families in developing healthier, more plant-focused eating habits that address childhood obesity and improve health outcomes. We focus on the connection between diet and nutrition and disease prevention, empowering families to take a holistic approach to their health.

In addition to cooking demonstrations and education on how and what to look for when shopping (farmers’ market, organic, gluten free, etc), FC offers cooking classes to adults and youth to allow families to directly understand how to prepare and cook fruits/vegetables, whole grains, and alternative proteins. These workshops provide information, support and encouragement to help families make a switch from unhealthy eating habits, and to help them in making good choices around nutrition.

Grandparent Support Groups (P)

For many years, grandparent support groups held in the home languages of our seniors to reduce cultural and linguistic isolation have been a part of programming at Family Connections. The setting allows for open-ended conversations regarding topics such as health, education or even citizenship. Support groups offer important information as well as time away from childrearing stress.

Respite Care (P)

Respite care provides a monthly opportunity for parents/ caregivers to have a break and recharge physical and emotional reserves. Children enjoy a healthy dinner, literary activities, movies, and arts & crafts at our center supervised by teachers, while parents/caregivers relax on their own.

Wellness Strategies (P & E)

Family Connections provides health and nutrition education and physical activity opportunities to children ages 4-11 to decrease the likelihood of obesity and raise awareness of healthy choices. We work to increase awareness of how eating a healthy diet and getting regular exercise helps to prevent obesity and disease, as well as increasing overall wellbeing.

We use BMI testing to inform families of what a healthy weight is for them and their children/grandchildren and we provide Keratin fruit and vegetable screening of children as well. Family Connections also provides workshops on such topics as dental care and flu prevention, and coordinates with the public health nurse to offer flu shots to program participants.