Health Center News, Uncategorized

In South Carolina Renewed Hope for Wellness

By Amy Simmons Farber

Beaufort-Jasper-Hampton Comprehensive Health Services, Inc. (BJHCHS) has earned its reputation for success. Since its modest beginnings in 1970, low country residents in Ridgeland, SC, have depended on the health center to stay healthy and disease free, making BJHCHS one of the largest and most respected health care providers in the state. The real challenge for BJHCHS is tackling preventable health problems, such as obesity, diabetes, and high blood pressure. BJHCHS has a plan to reach out to residents and address these health issues and the social determinants that are often contributing factors: poverty, dietary habits, and sedentary lifestyles.

Now, thanks to a generous grant from the Kresge Foundation of $750,000, BJHCHS can plunge into a Community Health and Fitness Program that aims to teach patients how to achieve healthier lives through better diet and exercise. The BJHCHS program will operate through the public school system, serving Kindergarten through 12th grade students, and will teach student about the benefits of a healthy life style and eating habits to reduce the risk factors for disease.

“We are deeply honored and humbled by the stamp of confidence the Kresge Foundation has in our mission and accomplishments,” said Roland J. Gardner, CEO of Beaufort-Jasper-Hampton Comprehensive Health Services, Inc. “Thanks to their generous grant, we can continue our efforts to bring wellness and good health to the community through the Sheldon Township Community Health and Fitness Program.”

This is not the first time that Gardner and BJHCHS have been recognized for their groundbreaking work. Earlier this year, Gardner was honored with the NACHC 2010 John Gilbert Award, which recognizes longstanding excellence and leadership in community health.