Boca Raton, Florida – March is National Nutrition Month and Boca Helping hand (BHH) continues to promote good nutrition by offering free health and wellness classes and expanding its pantry bag program.

“Nutrition is a year-round priority at Boca Helping Hands,” said BHH Executive Director Greg Hazle. “Our ultimate goal is to help our customers achieve financial independence, and eating well and staying healthy are key to that, as medical bills and health issues can push someone into poverty or keep from getting out.”

The free health and wellness classes are offered in partnership with Baptist Health South Florida (BHSF). Typically held twice a month, BHSF classes are open to the public and available virtually. Each class focuses on ways individuals can improve their overall health through presentations from hands-on experts, like Joi Renee Canton (MSN, RN, NPD-BC) Class Instructor and Boca Raton Regional Hospital Manager, part of Baptist Health, for Community Outreach Population and Corporate Health. The next classes will take place on Friday March 18 at noon and Friday March 25 at noon.

“One of the priorities of Boca Raton Regional Hospital, part of Baptist Health, is to meet the health and wellness needs within the communities we serve,” Canton said. “Our partnership with Boca Helping Hands allows us to reach out to the community and let people know why nutrition is important. Our presentations are interactive and fun, and I hope audiences can walk away feeling educated and empowered enough to make changes that will benefit their lives.

To register, go to https://www.bocahelpinghands.org/HealthyLiving.

Boca Helping Hands recently expanded its pantry bag services, launching a three-month pilot program to provide customers with boxes of local fresh produce, with support from Gerstner Philanthropies. Customers received their first box of vegetables in February through the program, which aims to promote good health by distributing fresh, nutritious produce from local farms. The program will run until April – and hopefully longer, if BHH can secure additional funding.

Another way BHH promotes good nutrition is to provide customers with an electronic cookbook filled with simple, healthy recipes using staple items included in BHH’s pantry bags. Compiled by two local Girl Scouts, Analiesa Chavez and Kelsey Bonner, as part of a service project last year, all recipes have been designed to help customers more easily prepare healthy meals at home. Having easy-to-follow recipes also encourages customers to try using some of the ingredients they aren’t as familiar with that might otherwise go to waste.

All of these nutritional initiatives are key parts of BHH’s health and wellness program, along with its gluten-free pantry program and a healthcare voucher program that expands access to medical, dental and health care. behavior to uninsured people.

About Boca Helping Hands

Boca Helping Hands (BHH) is a non-profit, community-based organization that provides food, medical, and financial assistance to meet basic human needs, as well as education, job training, and counseling to create self-sufficiency. Through its various programs, BHH helps more than 27,000 people each year.

In 2021, BHH distributed more than 70,000 pantry bags from five Palm Beach County locations and served nearly 80,000 hot meals. The organization expands access to affordable medical, dental and behavioral care through its partnerships with Genesis Community Health (serving clients at clinics in Boca Raton and Boynton Beach) and Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing Community Based Clinics from Florida Atlantic University (serving residents of West Palm Beach). Additionally, BHH sends meals home on weekends with food-insecure elementary school students through the BHH Backpacks program and helps working families cope with the rising cost of child care. children through the Child Assistance Program (CAP).

With a greater emphasis on client empowerment, BHH awards scholarships to qualified candidates to attend accredited vocational training courses that prepare them for careers in healthcare, information technology, construction and transport. BHH also offers free English as a Second Language (ESOL) classes, nutrition classes, and other life skills. In addition, staff and volunteer mentors advise the unemployed and underemployed on basic workplace skills and help them polish their resumes and seek employment.

Boca Helping Hands is an agency partner of The Town of Palm Beach United Way. Since 1945, the City of Palm Beach United Way has been committed to improving lives and building strong communities throughout Palm Beach County by focusing on programs and priorities that promote education, health and financial stability.

Charity Navigator named Boca Helping Hands a four-star charity for the 15th consecutive year in June 2021. Boca Helping Hands is located at 1500 NW 1st Court, Boca Raton, FL 33432. For more information, please visit BocaHelpingHands.org