2015 Annual Report
For Groceryships, 2015 has been a year of incredible growth. A glance at our program numbers can tell you part of the story. This year, Groceryships has grown from:
- 2 groups to 10 groups
- 20 families served to 100 families served
- 2 group leaders to 12 group leaders, including 4 Groceryships Graduates!
- 3 program volunteers to 15 (and more every day!)
- 0 lbs. of produce to over 10,000 lbs. of produce delivered directly to our families!!!
And that's just the beginning. Read on to learn about our BRAND NEW COMMUNITY CENTER, and our exciting program outcomes...
First, an Introduction...
Meet Elizabeth, the newest of our Groceryships Ambassadors. Elizabeth graduated in October 2015, and is now helping to lead our newest group of Groceryships participants. As a group member, Elizabeth consistently shared with a candidness and vulnerability that is rare, offering personal insights and reflections that were a valued part of her last group's experience.
For example, there was a point in her own journey that Elizabeth felt overwhelmed by the vastness of her health goals. "Losing weight" felt too vague and daunting. But, instead of being defeated, in the sharing circle that day, Elizabeth explained that she had decided to reframe her situation. Instead of setting "goals", she decided to make each day an opportunity to "practice making healthy choices." By breaking down her intentions into manageable, moment by moment actions, she was able to change her eating habits in small, but meaningful ways. In this way, Elizabeth embodies Groceryships' motto, to make healthy changes one step at a time.
We are tremendously grateful that she has chosen to continue on with us as a group co-leader. Her sensitivity and heart are a great gift to all that work with her.
Groceryships Community Center
That's right! This year, Groceryships found a home at 1101 W. 23rd St. We are located on the corner of a vibrant street, across from a little patch of green space, in the heart of University Park. Our location has won us many new friends and neighbors. Walk-in traffic has helped populate our new groups, and students from USC have become a treasured part of our volunteer teams.
A big thank you to our donors, Paul and Amy Blavin, who made our new home possible, and to all of the donors who have contributed to our CrowdFunding campaign to help us construct a beautiful home out of this raw and promising space.
Within these new walls, tremendous successes have already occurred. After our second pilot program graduated in March 2015, thanks to the help of our graduates, we created and launched three new groups. The first to break in our new digs, these groups hit some other notable benchmarks, as well.
After witnessing the emotional transformations of many of our previous program participants, we began measuring our program's impact on self-esteem. As these three groups neared graduation in October, the results exceeded our expectations.
By measuring self-esteem at the start and end of our program using the Rosenberg Scale, we saw an average 10% increase in self-esteem scores (bringing many members from the low to below normal range, to the highest ranges of self-esteem on a 30 point scale).
We also kept track of weight-loss, and although we continue to stress that we are not a weight-loss program (but instead a lifestyle program), were delighted to see the following outcomes:
The health benefits of the dietary changes our members make extend beyond weight-loss. Many of our members begin our program with diabetes, high cholesterol, and other serious diet-related diseases. Recently, one doctor from Kaiser Permanente referred her patient to us in the hopes that our program could help. Upon completion of this program she wrote to us the following:
"The Groceryships program was an incredible learning experience for my patient, and with her new knowledge she was able to get her chronic medical conditions controlled."
-Dr. Diana Mendez, Kaiser Permanente
Food consumption habits also changed, which suggests that the health metrics we measured will continue on after our program ends. For example:
The program works, but don't just take our word for it. Here's what one of our members had to say:
“Nothing compares to arriving to class and being asked how your week was. Sometimes [you] can feel that [you] are insignificant to everyone. So thank you to everyone at Groceryships for having given us the opportunity to attend these classes, and for having the opportunity to meet other people that are interested in change in every sense of the word."
-Leidy R., Groceryships Graduate
This year also marked the beginning of many new partnerships with neighboring nonprofits.
We are so grateful to have the support of Esperanza Community Housing, who have introduced their knowledgable promotoras ("health promoters") to us. 5 of our 6 current groups have one of these experienced health leaders at their helm, and our programs are thriving, thanks to their efforts.
We are also grateful for our friends at LIFT-LA and LA's Promise, who have helped to recruit new members into all of our groups.
And thanks to our partners at Food Forward and Farm Fresh to You, we have been able to share over 10,000 lbs. of fresh and organic produce-- direct from local farmer's markets and local farmers--with our members.
Because of these partnerships, we have been able to significantly reduce our program costs, which means a more sustainable future, and a more abundant community of families.
We are so proud to share these outcomes with you. But we wouldn't be here without your generous support. A heartfelt thank you to all of our donors. Because of your support, we are well on the way to meeting our goals of beautifying our new center, and doubling our program reach in 2016!
Groceryships Thanks You for Your Generosity
Michael Meyer, Jerry Cudzil, Kurt Halvorson, Paul & Amy Blavin, Mary Ellen Klee, Craig Snyder, Mental Insight Foundation, Ralphs Fund Food 4 Less Fund, Scott Goodwin, Good People Foundation, American Jewish Federation, KP Financial Services Ops, Brian Daoust, Sarah Penna, Dole, Gerry Parsky, Kaiser - West LA, Clif Bar Foundation, James Ford, Mark Borovitz, Sean George, Joram Siegel, Trice Koopman, Crowdrise /Network for Good, Whole Foods, Kip Pastor, Benjamin Jacobson, Robert & Margaret McNamara Foundation, Lorraine Adams, Dylan Korpita, Hoyt Halvorson, Jon Klein, Jonathan Barry, Kevin Boova, Saurabh Jain, Angela Deering, David Loerch, Joe Spiccia, Myra Goodman, Young Investors Organization, Amy Cannon-Kulcak, Stander, Reubens, et al, Splash, Andrea Goeglein, Daniel Brand, David Foster, Sachin Goel, Vitamix, Asis Foundation - Jeff Bridges, Carl Haefling Carrie Getz, Christopher Mahony, David Kirshenbaum, David Spencer, Dianella Mykitta, Emmett Foundation, Franklin Amoo, Harris and Eliza Kempner Fund, Jesse Comly, Keith Horowitz, Kelly Meyer, Matthew Palamountain, Ranjit Ahluwalia, Steve Halvorson, Sweet Nature, Alison Wissot, Daniel & Linda Rosenson, Jaclyn Clifford, Kirk John-Williams, Paul Simon, Susan Nix, Tami Goldman, Scott Kaiser, Jeffrey Taraday, Adrienne Wienir, Athar Ashai, Comerica, Fuad Harfuch, Inga Canfield, Marie Docter, Patti Schulte, R. Craig McNamara, Robin Berman, Stephanie Smooke, Alex Dorsey, Chris Kane, Jeremy Primer, Camilo Trujillo, Elizabeth Ricanati, Nutribullet, Linda Redford, Robert Fraser & Katie Siler, Julie Yadgaroff, The Veggie Grill, Inc., Becky Bainer, Brendan Farrell, Cecily Jackson-Zapata, Jacqueline Quinn, Janet Shuman, Jared & Julie Strumwasser, Jay Liebowitz, Michael Marino, Michele Caro, Neal Frankle, Scott Maddux, Susan Arons, Wonderful Giving, Lincolnwood Drive Development, Kim Nguyen / Kasey Lockwood, Pamela Winter, Susan Napier, Timothy McCarthy, Andrea Wolff, Amelita Pascual, Brendan Barrett, Stosh Mintek, Richard Nakano, Gail Brousal, Aaron Cohen, Linda Larach, Al Braun, Alison Pascola, Amanda Wilson, Angela Cali, Anne Seidlitz, Ari Friedman, Ariana Ghez, Bill Foster, Brandon Smith, Brian Gitt, Brian Moore, Chris Downie, Christina Ford, Steven Gersh, Christine Beard, Wanderlust, David Fergione, Irfan Kawosa, Jack Nelson