Healthy Communities’ Fall and Winter News

At first glance, the list of activities below may seem like random and unrelated activities. But as a whole, these activities reflect a deep collective impact. As HCC board member Sarah Adler phrases it, “While it may look like just a lot of spinning plates, it’s really a banquet in the making.” HCC is composed of hundreds of hard working community volunteers, a small staff and dedicated board, and a wide-range of quality groups working together to promote community wellness through “collective impact strategies.” This simply means that a lot gets accomplished in a cost effective and efficient way through carefully planned teamwork. Everyone is invited to join the Coalition for breakfast and public meetings on the 2nd Thursday of each month at 9am (except July).

What’s Happening:

Below you’ll find a sample of upcoming events, ongoing programs and developing initiatives that combined, make our communities stronger and more resilient.

Healthy Communities hosts a public meeting & breakfast on the 2nd Thurs of each month at 9am

Holiday Spirit: Schools in Lyon County always do a great job gathering donations for area food pantries for the holidays. This year in Dayton, schools are gathering items for HCC’s Dayton Food Pantry. DES is gathering any canned fruits or vegetables; Riverview Elementary is gathering any canned vegetable; Sutro Elementary is gathering boxed turkey stuffing or dressing, and boxed mac & cheese; Dayton Intermediate is gathering rice and instant mashed potatoes; and Dayton High is gathering canned gravy and canned soups. For more details about how you can help, contact the Pantry at 246-7834

Weight Loss Group and Zumba: Healthy Communities Coalition hosts a weight loss support group which meets every Wednesday at 5:30pm at the Dayton Valley Community Center at 170 Pike Street. Participants report that the meetings are fun and full of support, with members sharing nutritious recipes and health and fitness tips. There’s an option to also attend a Zumba Gold class after each meeting ($5 per Zumba class). Zumba Gold is a modified Zumba® class that recreates the original dance exercise moves at a lower-intensity. Classes are open to men and women of all ages. For more information, contact Lisa Selmi at HCC at 246-7550.

School and Community Gardens and Hoop Houses: Did you know that Lyon County School District has more than one dozen school gardens and/or hoop houses, including at least one in each school system, and that you can find community gardens in Silver Springs, Dayton, and Silver with plans for more school and community gardens in the works?  This year, salad bars with fresh produce from local farms and school gardens are being piloted in Lyon schools. Contact Wendy Madson at HCC at 246-7550 for more details about how you can contribute to the gardens, the salad bars, and more.

Cooking Classes: Everyone is welcome at Healthy Communities Coalition’s monthly FREE cooking classes with dietitian Kim Mason, and farmer and Healthy Communities’ “farm to school” liaison and Community Health Advocate, Rebekah Stetson. These classes usually take place on the third Monday of each month at 5:30pm at the Dayton Community Center at 170 Pike Street. Call 246-7550 for more details, or see the HCC website at The next class is on Monday, November 23rd at 5:30 pm at the Dayton Community Center at 170 Pike Street. The classes are one element of a regional “healthy food hub,” an effort to increase access to & demand for affordable, locally and sustainably grown food.

School Resource Coordinators: Schools in Lyon County now have Resource Coordinators to help connect students and their families to needed local resources, such as to groups that provide dental, vision, medical and mental health care, affordable housing, food, clothing, parenting support, etc. The Coordinators do not provide the direct services, rather, they help families find the groups that can help. Coordinators serve the schools in Yerington/Smith Valley, Fernley, Dayton and Silver Springs. Call Peggy Edwards, regional coordinator for the School Resource staff, at Healthy Communities at 246-7550, for more details.

Weekend Food Backpacks for K-12 in Dayton and Silver Springs: HCC’s Dayton Food Pantry is providing 170 backpacks (food for the weekend) each week to local K-12 students, and Silver Stage Food Pantry provides 64 to local students. If your child needs a backpack, contact your school counselor. Donations to the Food Pantry for backpacks are needed and welcomed, particularly pull-top meals, soups, oatmeal, and crackers. Call Dayton Pantry at 246-7834 or Silver Stage Pantry at 577-9161 for details about how to donate.

Dayton Food Pantry (Holiday Hours): Residents of the Dayton area work with Healthy Communities Coalition in volunteer service to keep this pantry going strong Mon-Thurs from 10am-4pm. Call 246-7834 for more details. The Pantry organizes a food distribution once a month at Sutro Elementary school, and offers emergency food boxes at the pantry during weekdays, and monthly food boxes for the Dayton Senior Center Homebound List and weekly food deliveries to local students through a school weekend “Backpack Program”. The Pantry receives funding through grants, USDA, and the generous donations of businesses and private citizens in the region. The Pantry collects food through Food Bank of Northern Nevada and through reduced rates from many area businesses. Volunteers range from the very young to elders, and come from all walks of life, united by the belief that no one should go hungry. Turkeys and other food will be distributed on Saturday, November 21st from noon to 3pm at Sutro Elementary School. A flu shot clinic with Carson City Health and Human Services will also be conveniently offered at the same place on Nov. 21st from 11am-2pm.  The Pantry will be closed on Wednesday November 25 and Thursday November 26, and closed as it normally is on Friday. The Pantry will also be closed on December 24, 25,and on December 31 and December 31. For more details or see

Silver Stage Food Pantry and gardens and hoop house: Residents from the Silver Springs region work with Healthy Communities Coalition in volunteer service to create this warm and welcoming Pantry. It is open Monday-Friday from 10am-4pm except holidays, and is conveniently located next to a thriving community garden and hoop house full of seasonal produce, the Jackrabbit Junction and an indoor farmers’ market that accepts SNAP and WIC as payment, and a Little Free Library. Silver Stage Food Pantry’s Thanksgiving food distribution is on Monday Nov 23 and Tuesday Nov 24, 2015 at the Pantry at 3595 Ramsey Weeks Cut-Off from 10am-4pm. Kathy McIntosh, HCC’s Silver Stage Pantry director, explains “For families who are coming to the Pantry for the first time on either of those days, we have set aside 2pm to 4pm to process paperwork.” People coming to the Pantry for the first time should bring proof of income and residency.  The Pantry will be closed November 25 through November 30th for the Thanksgiving holiday, reopening on December 1st. The Pantry will also be closed December 23-25 and from December 30, 2015 through January 3, 2016.Please call  577-9161 for more information.

Job Search, Resume Development, and Job Training: The nonprofit Community Chest, Inc offers employment assistance onsite at Healthy Communities’ food pantries in Silver Springs and Dayton, with professional staff who can help clients locate job openings, develop resumes, and connect with job training opportunities, in addition to assisting with Medicaid, Disability and SNAP (food stamps).

Jackrabbit Junction and Indoor Farmers Market: “Jackrabbit Junction” is a community-directed initiative, located next to the Food Pantry in Silver Springs. It one spoke in a regional “healthy food hub”, an effort to increase access to and demand for affordable, local and sustainably grown food.  Jackrabbit Junction offers an inventory of natural, organic and fresh, regional foods. The year-round indoor farmers market can accept WIC, SNAP, cash, etc as payment.

Community Harvest CSA: Community Supported Agriculture is a way to support farmers in our area by buying into a share of food for the growing season. It’s a win-win for consumers and growers because consumers get delicious, fresh and mostly, if not all, organic produce throughout the growing season, and growers have the financial support from their customers at the beginning of the season. Other benefits for farmers include being able to market the food early in the year before the height of the growing season and being able to know the people they are feeding with their food. Orders can be made online:

Home Visiting Program for Families of Newborns in Storey and Lyon: With added funding through Healthy Communities Coalition of Lyon and Storey through a federal Safe Schools, Healthy Students grant, Lyon County Human Services and Community Chest staff are implementing the Healthy Families America (HFA) Program, a free and voluntary home visiting program for Storey and Lyon County families with newborns. HFA is a nationally-recognized, evidence-based home visiting program that connects families with child development information and resources. More info here:

Central Lyon Youth Connections Project Success expansion: With added funding through Healthy Communities Coalition of Lyon and Storey through a federal Safe Schools, Healthy Students grant, CLYC now has licensed social workers onsite in Yerington and Fernley as well as in Silver Springs, and Dayton high schools. Call CLYC at 246-0320 for more details.

Stand Tall: These youth leadership teams in high schools in Fernley, Yerington, Silver Springs and Dayton are part of Healthy Communities Coalition. There will be a Turkey Trot 5K on Nov 21st to raise funds for local Stand Tall scholarships, and a turkey basket raffle on Nov 23rd to raise Stand Tall scholarship funds in Silver Springs. HCC’s Stand Tall club at Silver Stage High is holding a food drive competition for SSES and SSMS and the winning class will receive a pizza party on Nov. 24th. On Dec. 11th during a dessert with Santa event at SSES, SSHS Stand Tall leaders will host a table with free coats and warm clothing. Contact Lindsey at FHS or Tammy at SSHS for details. Youths participate in extensive training every year in order to learn about and then share education about sober and healthy lifestyles with their peers and communities. Teens learn leadership skills such as public speaking, and work with their schools and communities to prevent alcohol, tobacco, prescription and other drug use and to promote good nutrition and fitness. The teams also take on a number of projects every year to serve their communities, including coat, shoe and food drives. In addition, Stand Tall teams sponsor 4 annual community 5K Walk/Run events (Yerington, Dayton, Silver Springs, and Fernley) to promote fitness and to raise funds for their Stand Tall scholarships. For information about other Stand Tall teams, contact HCC’s regional Stand Tall coordinator, Anji Winebarger, at 246-7550.

Comstock Youth Works in Lyon and Storey communities: This job training, life skills and academic success coaching program has multiple funders, including funding through Healthy Communities Coalition through a federal Safe Schools, Healthy Students grant. 50 teens from the Storey and Lyon regions participate each year in Comstock Youth Works, a program that includes summer job internships; career exploration field trips; job skills training; coaching in academic success and scholarship searches/applications; leadership training; volunteer service projects; educational enrichment field trips; and much more. This program is sponsored through Community Chest Inc, with multiple sources of funding. Contact regional coordinator Anji Winebarger at 246-7550 at HCC for more details.For information about Comstock Youth Works, contact HCC’s regional CYW coordinator, Anji Winebarger, at 246-7550.

Direct Service Provider Breakfasts and Health Hub Core Team: a stellar example of collective impact strategies, the Health and Wellness hub in the Lyon and Storey regions is cost effective and efficient. The Hub includes a Core Team of group leaders and coordinators, as well as a network of direct service providers. The Core Team meets about once a month, and the Service Providers meet over breakfast monthly. A primary goal is bringing services to “where the people already are.”  Direct service providers involved in the developing Health and Wellness Hub have noted impacts in the Lyon/Storey region such as reduced social isolation, reduced hospitalization, reduced recidivism, reduced no-shows for client appointments with social services, increased training with Western NAMI and reduced stigma around mental health, increased exercise, increased appropriate referrals to resources, access to affordable fresh, local produce, increased senior independent living, increased networking and cross-agency communication among direct service providers, increase in families achieving goals they’ve set for themselves, pre- and post testing in gains in fitness and academic tutoring at BGC, reductions in school expulsions, increased data tracking and analysis, etc. If you’re a service provider and would like to be involved, contact Christy McGill at Healthy Communities at 246-7550.

Behavioral Health Task Force in Lyon County: composed of direct service providers like social services, mental health clinics, and health care groups, plus jails, law enforcement, and nonprofits like Healthy Communities Coalition, this task force meets monthly to work out cost efficient, effective strategies for connecting people with mental health issues and/or substance abuse issues to treatment, resources and support so that they 1) do not end up in jail or 2)do not return to jail. One strategy is the development of the FASTT or Forensic Assessment Services Team that got started recently in the Lyon County region. Multiple sectors, such as mental health, county services, medical services, etc help assess and address jail inmates with mental health and/or behavioral health barriers. They then coordinate an effective release plan, connection to services in jail and after jail, etc. The goal is to stabilize adults so they can prevent future arrests, get jobs and become better parents and citizens. FASST helps reduce recidivism, visits to emergency rooms, and increases connection to community, to needed services, and supports a return to work, school or job training. Another strategy is MOST, or Mobile Outreach Services Team. If police get a call where mental health is an issue, but no danger to self and others exists, they will refer the issue to the local MOST team (mental health professional, deputy, etc.) MOST can help defuse the situation, de-escalate family crises, and refer and connect to appropriate services and supports. Contact Christy at HCC if you’d like to attend meetings: 246-7550.

Arts: Healthy Communities adds support to arts activities, programming and education in public spaces whenever possible by working with many groups such as Capital City Arts Initiative, Nevada Arts Council, Silver City Arts (public programming), St. Mary’s Art Center, Resident Artist Program in Silver CIty (visiting artists from the U.S. and other countries), Silver City Summer STEAM program, etc. This year, professional artists will be visiting Dayton High art classes and Silver Stage Elementary 6th graders through CCAI’s “Artists in Education” program. Capital City Arts Initiative, with added funding support from HCC, will bring artist Katie Lewis to make a presentation to Dayton High art students this November. Katie Lewis received her BA from Colorado College and her MFA from California College of the Arts. She has exhibited her work nationally and internationally at venues such as the Museum of Modern Art Luxembourg, Museum Rijswijk – The Netherlands, Stanford University, San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, San Francisco State University, and the Patricia Sweetow Gallery. In 2010 she was awarded a prestigious Pollock Krasner Foundation Grant. She has also been included in the publications The Map as Art: Contemporary Artists Explore Cartography and Cartographies of Time both published by Princeton Architectural Press.

Yerington Task Force: The Yerington Task Force is a group of Yerington area volunteers with Healthy Communities Coalition that has promoted and/or added support to many community-strengthening events and projects over the years, such as: the Oct 2015 Yerington Remote Area Medical event, a Yerington agricultural photos contest, and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders awareness campaigns. YTF has helped add funding to events like drumming lessons for kids at the local library, Safe and Sober Grad Night events, substance abuse prevention classes and leadership camps for youth, and they’ve helped host several suicide prevention and postvention trainings by outstanding agencies like the Nevada Office of Suicide Prevention. In past years, YTF partnered with the Boys & Girls Club of Mason Valley’s Teens Helping the Community (THTC), YHS Stand Tall, and BGC to host an annual Walk in Memory, Walk for Hope community suicide prevention event with the Nevada Coalition for Suicide Prevention (NCSP). The group meets monthly at the BGC Teen Club in Yerington at 5:15pm. Contact leader Helen Sturtevant for more info.

Collective Impact

In the last few months of 2015, the Coalition has been involved with a tremendous range of activities -free Remote Area Medical (RAM) clinics in Vegas, Yerington and Carson City – school and community gardens – dinner and cultural exchanges with scholars from 16 different African nations – arts workshops and exhibits by acclaimed artists from the U.S. and abroad -a weight loss support group- teen job and leadership training – healthy cooking classes – farmers markets -5K Walk/Run events to raise scholarships for local students – development of a community supported agriculture program (CSA) – free children’s summer STEAM (Science, Tech, Engineering, Arts and Math) programs, and much more. The work intersects through two interconnected hubs – the Healthy Food Hub and the Health and Wellness Hub.

The Coalition uses the concept of “hubs” to promote wellness in two broad, intersecting areas including a “Healthy Food Hub” and a “Health and Wellness Hub.” The “spokes” include multiple strategies such as:

Food Hub Spokes

school and community gardens and hoop houses

teen job training programs and garden internships

farmers markerts that accept WIC and SNAP as payment

volunteer-powered food pantries with weekend food backpack programs for local students

healthy cooking classes with health advocates and dietitians

gardening education

support for Basin & Range Organics: HCC is the temporary fiscal agent for Basin and Range Organics, known as BAR O. The purpose of the group is to to provide Nevada-based certifiers and inspectors for producers and handlers in Nevada and the surrounding region in order to reduce costs from out-of-state certifiers and inspectors. BAR O was created in July of 2015, after the Nevada Ag Council decided to discontinue the Organics Program administered through the Nevada Department of Agriculture. More here:

Health and Wellness Hub Spokes

free classes on tobacco cessation and diabetes prevention and management and other training, referral and outreach through HCC Community Health Advocates

HCC weight loss support group

teen peer-to peer education to promote wellness and to prevent tobacco, alcohol, prescription and other drug use, and teen leadership training (HCC’s Stand Tall)

promotion of coordinated delivery of free dental, medical and mental health services onsite at schools (Core Management Team and Safe Schools, Healthy Students grant)

expanding coordination with health care groups to bring vaccinations and other basic health care services to “where people are”, such as food pantries, schools, community centers, etc.

School Resource Coordinator staff in each school system in Lyon County, a home visiting program for families with newborns in Storey and Lyon through CCI and Lyon Human Services, Project Success licensed social workers in Yerington, Fernley, Dayton and Silver Springs high schools through Central Lyon Youth Connections

coordinated approaches among jails, law enforcement, justice, mental and medical health and social services to address and reduce mental health crises and drug misuse in the community

added support for arts events, activities and education in public spaces such as schools, parks, community centers

coordinating support for Remote Area Medical events in Nevada

support for community training in “Mental Health First Aid” and “Signs of Suicide” and strategies for early intervention