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Patient Stories | Overview

Participant perspective

Meet Karl

Karl (age 7) enrolled in the Healthy in the City program at the Mattapan Community Health Center (MCHC) in fall 2016. Karl was referred by his primary care doctor and now receives case management services, nutrition education, and physical activity opportunities in his local neighborhood. After his enrollment in the program, he received a scholarship to the Thomas M. Menino YMCA in Hyde Park. He loves to play basketball there on the weekends and is very excited to start karate. “I’m so grateful. I’m so happy that he got it [YMCA scholarship] because it costs a lot to go to the YMCA, especially if you want to take classes. It will keep him busy this summer,” says Karl’s mom, Sheila. Karl also attends the health center’s Saturday group sessions where he participates in group exercises with a trainer and learns how to make healthy smoothies.

In addition to exercising, Karl and Sheila also made changes to their diet. Mattapan’s case manager has been working closely with the family to set attainable goals such as eating more healthfully, watching less TV, and drinking water instead of juice or soda. “If he sees something that has too much sugar, he will say ‘that’s too much sugar, I don’t want it,' ” says Sheila.

Case manager perspective

“Healthy in the City impacts the children and their families in a ripple effect. The direct changes are for them, by them, but by making healthier choices those around them often start to make healthier choices.”

Anne Hyers, RD, LDN, CLC, is the Brookside Community Health Center Community Nutritionist and Healthy in the City Case Manager. Anne also works with program participants at the Southern Jamaica Plain Health Center.