July 2012 marked the start of the Parca Wellness Program. Lead by Vanessa Kahlon, of Kahlon Family Services LLC, the program was made possible through generous grants from Sequoia Healthcare District & Kaiser Permanente and has been made available to all Parca programs, clients and family members.
Vanessa Kahlon is the founder of Kahlon Family Services LLC, a company that offers behavioral support to parents with children of all ages who have special needs. The Parca Wellness Program, through the guidance of Vanessa has been offering a number of valuable healthy living services including yoga, mindfulness and stress relief classes, Zumba classes, healthy food choices and healthy cooking instruction.
In November Vanessa lead an exercise and art activity with the children at REACH. After a discussion about the importance of eating healthy and exercising, Vanessa lead them in dodge ball games and dancing. Positive feedback from a few of the participants at REACH includes,
Darin 8 - "Play an hour a day and it helps your body."
Miley 11- "I learned that keeping healthy keeps you fit and eating healthy let’s you go to the doctor less often."
Talia 8 - "When you play a moving game you burn calories."
Logan 9 - "if you play dodge ball and you get out all you have to do is wait for the next person to get out and you can go back in. If you do sports you get stronger."
David has been living at Parca’s Cedar House in San Carlos, since it opened in 1984. For much of the time he has lived there, David has kept to himself, choosing to spend his time alone in his room, writing in his journal. Over the past couple of years, David has gone through a monumental transformation. Through the guidance and care of the Parca Cedar House staff, David has completely come out of his shell. He no longer spends his free time alone, choosing instead to hang out with his housemates and the Cedar House staff.
David is now more enthusiastic and actively participates in the day to day responsibilities of life at Cedar House, cooking dinner in the evenings, preparing his lunch every day, cleaning his room, doing his laundry and grocery shopping with his housemates each week.
One of David’s favorite activities is volunteering at Parca’s Raji House, where he has made new friends and does a fantastic job entertaining and working with the children there. In September 2011, Parca recognized David’s extraordinary achievements and progress by presenting him with an Achievement Award. Family, friends and the Parca staff are all so thrilled to be part of the tremendous progress David has made, and look forward to his continued growth toward a full, more active and independent life.
Diane is a 62 year old woman who lives independently at the Horizons apartments in Belmont. Diane receives regular Independent Living Skills (ILS) training from Parca to help her maintain her independence.
For 30 years Diane was employed by BPS, a blueprint company, where she worked binding books and running the copy machine until her retirement in 2005. Since her retirement, Diane has been working as a volunteer at the senior center in Redwood City where she sets the tables, makes sure that they are clean and gets the coffee ready for lunch.
Diana has been attending the fitness program at Horizons two times a week and has not missed one class since November 2009. She is learning the benefits of using stretchy bands and hand weights, stretching and jogging in place. She recently bumped up her cardio workouts by using a step. Since she started attending the fitness program, Diane has lost a total of 30 pounds! She was recently rewarded with a gift card, for her continuous hard work, dedication and for losing the most weight over the holidays.
With Parca’s help, Diane will continue to receive the support and guidance she needs to live a full, active and independent life.