Sun Life US awards $ 350,000 to organizations that support diabetes programs

“As we have seen before and during the pandemic, there are significant gaps between communities when it comes to access to health care and health-related services,” said Dan Fishbein, MD, President of Sun Life US “Through this grant program and our other philanthropic initiatives, Sun Life is committed to helping fill these gaps, ensuring that more people can access to health care and lead a healthier life.

Team Up Against Diabetes grant recipients are chosen based on innovative approaches to diabetes support and access to nutrition and other related health services. Grant applications are reviewed annually by a team of Sun Life employees, business partners and independent health experts.

This year’s Team Sun Life Diabetes Grants recipients are:

Mom’s kitchen, Diabetes Nutrition Program, San Diego
Mama’s Kitchen began in 1990 as a free meal delivery service to residents living with HIV / AIDS and over the years has expanded to support other at-risk populations affected by serious illness. This year’s Sun Life grant will help Mama’s Kitchen make its diabetes nutrition program permanent. This will ensure that people with diabetes get the help they need with meals and nutrition education. Since the pilot program began, Mama’s Kitchen has delivered more than 90,000 meals to hundreds of people with diabetes.

Shepherd’s clinic, Diabetes Self-Management Program, Baltimore
Shepherd’s Clinic provides health care to uninsured or underinsured adults in Baltimore. The Sun Life grant will support its diabetes self-management program. This program educates, treats and supports patients with prediabetes and diabetes. In addition, the program provides advanced training to staff members on the impact of racism on health, particularly diabetes. In addition, the grant will help with incentives for patients such as transportation, cost coverage, food boxes and gift cards.

Sansum Diabetes Research Institute, Vegetarian IQ, Santa barbara
The Sansum Diabetes Research Institute (SDRI) is dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by diabetes through research, education and care. The Sun Life grant will support the IRSD Veggie IQ initiative. This initiative helps low-income youth improve their knowledge about the value of consuming fruits and vegetables, which improves their mental and physical health.

Whispering roots, Food Justice Initiative: Access to Food, Education and Sustainability for Marginalized Communities, Omaha
Whispering Roots uses next-generation farming practices to cultivate healthy communities. Some of their practices include emergency food distribution, food pharmacy, farm stalls, STEM nutrition and culinary education, and indigenous agricultural support. With the help of Sun Life, Whispering Roots will expand its “Grow, Nurture and Educate” model in the following ways: Cultivate – cultivate, maintain and harvest gardens to produce native vegetables and plants. Feed-through expanding its delivery of over 1,600 meals on a weekly basis. Educate through nutrition and cooking classes, food pharmacy classes, and indigenous sustainability training.

Appetite for change, Community cooks lunch boxes, Minneapolis
Appetite For Change uses food as a tool to build health, wealth and social change. Being a black-led organization, their goal is to create health equity and eliminate health disparities in North Minneapolis. The Sun Life grant will support Community Cooks Meal Boxes, a program that contributes to the economic stability of small and medium-sized farmers in BIPOC. The grant will also help increase the number of meals served, as well as develop new materials, support for culinary education, program evaluations and dissemination of program results.

The Childhood Obesity Elimination Center (CHOIX), Community education project and mobile pantry program, Atlanta
CHOIX was founded as a resource center for families with children at higher risk of childhood obesity. The Sun Life grant will help CHOICES increase the number of children and families it supports by expanding its educational services, increasing food distribution and implementing new learning opportunities. For the youth program, the goal is to increase knowledge of the basics of cooking for good nutrition, increase physical activity, reduce time spent on technology and, in this way, provoke positive changes in attitudes and mental health. The grant will support 33,000 children and families over the next year.

The 2021 jury of Team Up Against Diabetes was composed of:

  • Marie Beth Baril, Associate Director, Stop-Loss & Health, Sun Life US
  • Marlene campbell biggs, Client Manager, Stop-Loss & Health, Sun Life US
  • Dr. Tracy hamill, Assistant Vice President and Medical Director, Sun Life US
  • Anne-Marie Hejna, Senior Business Development Officer, ComPsych Corporation
  • Tammi hendrick, Executive Administrative Assistant, Sun Life US
  • Latoya keatts, LTD Claims Manager, Sun Life US
  • Peter Kilmartin, Jr., partner, Mercer Health & Benefits
  • Glenna lasater, Vice President of Human Resources, The MGIS Companies, Inc.
  • Andre Lockett, Licensing Specialist, Brokerage Services, Sun Life US
  • Misty Randall, Vice President, Benefits Marketing, HUB International
  • Karen Blanche, Assistant Vice President, Client Solutions, Sun Life US

Since the inception of the Team Diabetes Grants program in 2016, Sun Life has donated over $ 1.35 million dollars for diabetes prevention, management and support programs. The grants have helped educate people about the impact of diabetes and the importance of following a healthy lifestyle. Sun Life also maintains partnerships with the American Diabetes Association in support of its Project Power youth health program, the Boston Celtics in support of the YMCAs of Greater Boston, Hartford and Southern Maine, and the Kansas City Royals to support various community diabetes programs in Kansas City.

To learn more about Sun Life’s Team Diabetes Grant program, visit www.sunlife.com/usgrants.

About Sun Life
Sun Life is a leading international financial services organization providing insurance, wealth and asset management solutions to individuals and businesses. Sun Life operates in a number of markets around the world, including Canada, United States, the UK, Ireland, Hong Kong, The Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China, Australia, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia and Bermuda. From September 30, 2021, Sun Life had total assets under management of 1.39 trillion Canadian dollars. For more information, please visit www.sunlife.com.

Sun Life Financial Inc. traded on the Toronto (TSX), new York (NYSE) and Philippine Stock Exchanges (PSE) under the symbol SLF.

In United States, Sun Life is one of the largest providers of group insurance, serving more than 55,000 employers in small, medium and large workplaces across the country. Sun Life’s U.S. portfolio of insurance products and services includes disability, absence management, life insurance, dental care, vision, voluntary care, extended health care and Health Insurance. Sun Life and its affiliates in the US asset management business employ approximately 5,500 people. Group insurance policies are issued by Sun Life, the life assurance company of Canada (Wellesley Hills, Mass.), except in new York, when the policies are issued by Sun Life and Health Insurance Company (US) (Lansing, Mich.). For more information, please visit www.sunlife.com/us.

Media contacts:
Devon Fernand
Sun Life USA
781-800-3609
[email protected]

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SOURCE Sun Life USA

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