As we all adjust to these unfortunate circumstances, it is important to maintain a sound mind and sound body. As a result, I have shifted to virtual measures in order to promote healthy eating habits and workout routines that we can all do in the comfort of our homes. For instance, I recently sent out a nutrition-focused email to my team at the Northwest Side Housing Center filled with recipes suitable to a quarantine lifestyle and ways to meal prep. Since we are all working to reduce the amount of visits to the grocery stores, I found recipes that utilize foods that are shelf stable and ingredients that are typical to find in our pantries. Furthermore, I coordinated a group yoga class via Zoom, which will occur later this week. I am looking forward to this dynamic activity as it both calms the mind and works the body. This will be the first of many weekly health activities that I plan on coordinating for my team. Next week, we plan to join a Zumba class!
Outside of internal programming, I am also working to develop virtual nutritional videos for the Comprando Rico y Sano program. The first video will highlight an easy, delicious, and healthy meal that anyone can cook during this time. Similar to the recipes in my email, the meal that I demonstrate is also conducive to today’s current situation and is easy to modify. After I finished recording the videos, we plan to post them on the Northwest Side Housing Center website. I will also share this resource with those at UnidosUS, another non-profit organization.
In addition to these outreach methods for healthy eating and exercise, I also conduct weekly check-in calls with older adults. Before the stay at home orders, I often served at Kelvyn Park Senior Center, developing nutritional programming and coordinating physical fitness events. As I was able to develop relationships overtime with these members, I now continue our communication through phone calls. During these check-in calls, we also sign people up for services such as Meals on Wheels and remind people to fill out the census.
Although I miss serving in the Belmont Cragin community at Northwest Side Housing Center and Kelvyn Park Senior Center, I am happy to have found other ways to serve virtually and connect with community members.
This blog post was written by NHC Chicago 2019-20 member Emily Fisher.
Emily is an Outreach Coordinator at Northwest Side Housing Center.