Newsletter - Volume 4, Issue 5
Tickets Available Now for BCHN Fall Dinner Fundraiser

Tickets are now available for the BCHN 2018 Fall Dinner, a fundraiser in support of our community health and wellness programs.   To purchase tickets for the October 11 gala at Marina Del Rey, visit  

To find out about sponsorship opportunities or to purchase an ad in the souvenir program book, visit

BCHN Launches Blood Pressure Program at Bay Eden

According to the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, 34.3% of Bronx residents have high blood pressure, which can lead to severe complications and increases the risk of heart disease, stroke, and death.

To enhance the quality of care for people with high blood pressure, BCHN is piloting a hypertension management program at community-based organizations around the Bronx.  The program launched on July 11 at Bay Eden Senior Center, where it runs every Wednesday from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM.  BCHN provides free screenings each week, and education needed for blood pressure monitoring and management. 

Pictured above, leading a blood pressure workshop at Bay Eden, are community health workers Brunella Calenzani and Ndeye NGom-Mbacke.

Board Member Spotlight: John Ruiz

John Ruiz joined the BCHN Board of Directors in May 2016.  He became a Board officer when he was elected Treasurer in May 2018.  Find out more in our latest Board Spotlight below.

John Ruiz has served the families and children of New York State for 36 years, including three years with the New York City Board of Education.   He is a graduate of State University of New York (SUNY) Empire State College with a Bachelor of Art in Labor Studies. He has certifications in Industrial Labor Management Relations from Cornell University and Conflict Resolution from Long Island University.   As a union activist, he held elected leadership positions with the NYS Public Employees Federation, one of the largest professional unions in the country.  As an Executive Board and Council leader, he insured that the conditions and rights of employment of his constituency were not infringed upon. He provided representation at hearings before the NYS Workers' Compensation Board and in all matters before Labor Administrative hearings. 

You have been on the BCHN board for 2 years, why did you initially become involved with the organization?
As a consumer of health care, I became involved because there was a need for the consumers at my clinic to have a voice in the delivery of health services and a process for their grievances to be heard.

What excites you most about BCHN's mission?
The opportunity to have a voice in supporting BCHN's mission, ensuring high-quality “medical care and support services are low cost or free, and available to people of all races, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, immigration, or health status” for Bronx residents.

What work do you do outside your involvement with BCHN?
Most of my time is shared among my grandkids’ educational development, community advocacy, and the Holy Cross Church. As a member of Mathew 25 group at Holy Cross Church, our mission is to provide assistance to the neediest of neediest in the community.

BCHN Plays Breastfeeding Jeopardy at FHC Health Fair
BCHN community health workers Michelle Forrester (pictured above) and Sherllay Castro led a group of moms in a game of "Breastfeeding Jeopardy" during the Family Health Center health fair on July 26.   

Also on hand was community health worker Brunella Calenzani, who educated attendees about naloxone, which can be used to rapidly reverse an opioid overdose, and distributed naloxone kits.  
Farmers' Market Walking Group Kicks Off New Season at UAFP

The walking group at University Avenue Family Practice kicked off a new season of farmers' market walks on July 24.   Led by community health worker Rosemarie Archilla (pictured above) and health educator Nereyda Franco, the patients walk from the health center to the farmers' market at Poe Park.

BCHN and TBHL Partner for Healthy Start Workshop

BCHN partnered with The Bronx Health Link on July 26 for our latest Healthy Start event.  This month's workshop focused on safe sleep and postpartum depression.

The Bronx Healthy Start program works to ensure that expecting and postpartum moms and babies up to the age of two are healthy, safe and thriving.

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