CAN Health & Wellness Newsletter – Exploring Mental and Physical Health
August 24, 2021

CAN Newsletter
Two girls with their backs turned with their arms around each other

Welcome to the first installment of CAN’s revamped Health & Wellness Newsletter! We will be sharing content surrounding the Whole Child Health and Wellness Vision and initiative, our Health and Wellness Action Team, as well as other approaches that prioritize the cumulative wellness of students in our Expanded Learning programs. 

The past year has been full of unprecedented changes and shifts that have affected our youth in many ways. As students are returning to the classroom this fall, focusing on the physical as well as mental health of students is a priority. Creating a welcoming environment for students, building strong relationships, and encouraging emotional regulation are just some of the ways that youth can feel safe and supported away from home. 

Explore these resources on how to prioritize the physical, emotional, and mental health for students, from the moment they walk into the door, this upcoming school year.

If you are interested in receiving these updates, sign up for the newsletter today! 

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New Brief: Improving Access to Free School Meals

Healthy Eating Research has released a new brief entitled Improving Access to Free School Meals: Addressing Intersections Between Universal Free School Meal Approaches and Educational Funding on improving access to free meals.

The brief aims to: 

  1. Provide an overview of universal free school meal benefits and approaches 
  2. Summarize the intersections between universal free school meal approaches and educational funding
  3. Identify opportunities for policy and practice to address the intersections between school meals and educational funding in order to improve access to school meals.
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Utilizing Funds to Prioritize Health and Wellness

Learning Policy Institute’s newest blog speaks on prioritizing wellness and accelerated learning during these trying times. Strengthening relationships is a top priority, and utilizing funds from the American Rescue Plan and other sources allows for time and space for community and relationship building. The ultimate goal is to both lower the anxiety in returning to school and better serve students during this upcoming school year.

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State Superintendent Tony Thurmond Hosts Safe and Successful Schools Webinar
August 25, 2021, 11 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Educators and school leaders are invited to join State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond and guests, Dr. Naomi Bardach, State Lead of Safe Schools for All Team, and Linda Darling-Hammond, Ed.D, President of California State Board of Education and Professor of Education Emeritus at Stanford University for a presentation and questions and answers session about safely opening and operating schools in California.

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Elevate Youth California, Funding Opportunity

Funding: 2 New Prop 64 Grant Opportunities!
Deadline: September 27/29, 2021

Two of the state agencies that receive funding via state cannabis tax revenues just announced new grant opportunities.

The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GOBiz) has released a Grant Solicitation for the California Community Reinvestment Grants Program. Nonprofit organizations and local health departments are eligible to apply for funds to serve communities disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs. The program funds direct services in 6 areas: job placement, mental health treatment, system navigation, linkages to medical care, substance use disorder treatment and legal services to address barriers to reentry. The first phase of the application process is due on September 29th at 11:59 pm.

Elevate Youth California has a new Request for Applications for its Youth Substance Use Disorder Prevention grant program. Nonprofit organizations and tribal organizations are eligible to apply to serve youth ages 12 to 26 in communities impacted by the War on Drugs. Applications are due by September 27th. 

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Mental Health Primer and Toolkit

Transcend Education has created a Comprehensive Mental Health Primer and a Mental Health Practices Toolkit to address how to prioritize students’ mental health as they return to school.

Mental Health is influenced by a variety of factors, but the most common are:

  • Environment within and beyond school
  • Relationships with others
  • Individual factors such as a young person’s ability to understand and manage their own thoughts and feelings

Explore these resources to see how schools can foster environments where positive mental health is prevalent. 

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State Farm to School Policy Handbook: 2002-2020

The National Farm to School Network and the Center for Agriculture and Food Systems at Vermont Law School released an updated State Farm to School Policy Handbook: 2002-2020

This edition spotlights policy opportunities to support universal school meals, supporting BIPOC producers, and those that support farm to school response to COVID-19. The handbook offers a roadmap to learn about existing policies and use them to advance towards new legislation.