Esperança’s mission is to, “Improve health and provide hope for families in the poorest communities of the world through sustainable disease prevention, education and treatment”. Since 1999, Esperança has been working in the Phoenix Metropolitan area to meet the health needs of low-income and under-served families in our local neighborhood. Our expertise is providing evidence-based culturally appropriate health education to address obesity, lifestyle-related chronic diseases, and oral health.
We provide education to prevent obesity and lifestyle-related chronic diseases through our evidence-based Salud con Sabor Latino (Health with a Latin Flavor) curriculum that focuses on changing behaviors and improving knowledge about nutrition and physical activity in adults, children and families. Included in the 8-12 class series is education about food groups, portion sizes, reading food labels, and tips for becoming more active. Participants engage in culturally-appropriate hands-on activities such as cooking sessions and a tour of the local supermarket. A celebration potluck is held for all participants and their families at the completion of the series.
For the last 18 years of teaching Salud con Sabor Latino, participant’s biggest complaint was “When is Salud con Sabor Latino II?”. They enjoyed getting to know other parents in their community and working together to build healthier families. After years of hard work, late nights and pages and pages of curriculum, Salud con Sabor Latino II launched in June 2017.
Though we are still in the pilot stage for research purposes, community members are very eager to participate. After completion of Salud con Sabor Latino I, participants can now sign up immediately for the next Salud con Sabor Latino II class.
Salud con Sabor Latino II delves deeper into the roots of obesity and preventable chronic diseases, while maintaining a focus on being culturally sensitive and appropriate for sustainable and implementable outcomes. Participants learn about small space gardening, how to be physically active without access to workout equipment, and even the scientific correlation between exercise and mental well-being!
The participants in Salud con Sabor Latino II are presented the material in a way that is culturally relevant, at the comprehension level, and all in their native Spanish. Those this all seems simple, participants were engaged in conversation and participation in a way they have never been before. They are not intimidated by the class because it is taught by their peers – fellow community members.
Though there will be minor changes to the curriculum as time goes on, the biggest complaint participants had about the class: “When is Salud con Sabor Latino III?”