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San Diego to celebrate health, education Aug. 9

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Family Health Centers of San Diego (FHCSD) and Assemblywoman Shirley N. Weber will host three celebrations Aug. 9, combining three major events into a single unified celebration at the new Diamond Neighborhoods Family Health Center.

The Health Fair and Back-to-School celebration will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Diamond Neighborhoods Family Health Center at the corner of 47th and Market Street (4725 Market Street). The event is free and open to the public.

More than 40 booths have been confirmed and will include music, games, activities, healthy food, a bounce house, the San Diego Police Department low-rider, health information, and back to school academic and enrichment information. Pazzaz will host a free school backpack giveaway for attendees.

The doors of the health center will be open for hosted tours and free health screenings, including blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose, vision, HIV, and dental. Several local experts will present workshops on timely topics ranging from eating healthy on a budget to caregiver education. Certified Enrollment Counselors will conduct insurance eligibility screenings and help qualified applications enroll in both Covered California and Medi-Cal.

International sports star and local hero “Marathon” Meb Keflezighi will be on hand to sign autographs, take photos and meet local youth, following his iconic first-place finish at the Boston Marathon this year. Keflezighi is a San Diego High graduate and lives in San Diego with his family. Keflezighi will join his sister at the event, Dr. Bahghi Keflezighi, who is one of the dedicated physicians who provide care for the community at the Diamond Neighborhoods Family Health Center.

Family Health Centers of San Diego’s Art in Healthcare program will feature more than 200 original paintings throughout the new clinic from acclaimed artist Gerrit Greve thanks to generous donations from Greve, Sheldon Engelhorn, and an anonymous donor.

The official ribbon cutting celebration will begin at 10 a.m. and will include remarks from State Sen. Ben Hueso, Assemblymember Shirley Weber, Councilmember Myrtle Cole, Meb Keflezighi and Dr. Keflezighi. The health center has been open at its new location since March 17 but this ribbon cutting will officially welcome it to the community.

The new Diamond Neighborhoods Family Health Center is a three-story, 23,000-square-foot facility built to provide medical, mental health, dental and supportive services to the local community. It replaces the small storefront facility that has served the community since 2007. The center is also home to the San Diego County’s Black Infant Health Program, operated by Family Health Centers of San Diego.

Capital funding for the new health center was provided by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration through a grant authorized by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the federal New Market Tax Credit (NMTC) program, and by Family Health Centers of San Diego. The New Market Tax Credit team was comprised of Enterprise Community Investment Inc., Chase, Enterprise Community Loan Fund and Nonprofit Finance Fund. Grants to purchase equipment in the health center were awarded by Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, William Randolph Hearst Foundation, WebMD Health Foundation, The Parker Foundation, Cox Communications, and the National Cheers Foundation. Total project cost was approximately $13 million.

The health center’s core construction team included Hughes Marino as the project manager, Suffolk Roel as general contractor, and Davy Architecture as the architect.

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