March 4, 2008

[Archive] Stacy Lavilla
Director of Communications
(510) 272-9536 x110

WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 4, 2008 – Michelle Galvez of Honolulu, Hawaii has been selected as a grand prize winner in OUR STORIES: Health and Wellness in the AAPI Community, a national essay contest sponsored by the Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO). Winners will be honored at AAPCHO’s 20th Anniversary: Cultivating Traditions of Wellness Gala on March 11, 2008 in Washington, D.C.

Essay contest participants were asked to describe the impact that Community Health Centers’ (CHCs) culturally and linguistically appropriate health care services have had on their lives. Galvez, a junior at Sacred Hearts Academy, imparted the touching story of how Kalihi-Palama Health Center (KPHC) provided a welcoming environment that helped her to become the healthy and motivated individual she is today. The 17-year-old is the winner of the Youth, Community Health Center Patient category of the essay contest.

“We have witnessed tens of thousands of individuals like Ms. Galvez who have ‘grown up’ within our clinic,” said Emmanuel Kintu, executive director of KPHC, which provides comprehensive health care for Honolulu residents. “We’re honored that we can not only offer patients like Ms. Galvez health care that is culturally sensitive and linguistically appropriate, but that we can provide an environment that also feels like home.”

Jeffrey Caballero, executive director at AAPCHO, said the essay contest overall highlights the crucial role CHCs play in providing services to patients like Ms. Galvez. “Through this contest we not only counter the misconception that all Asians are healthy and can easily access and afford health care, but we underscore how CHCs cultivate a culture of preventive practices which means healthier patients and lower health care system costs,” Caballero said.

AAPCHO is a not-for-profit association dedicated to promoting advocacy, collaboration, and leadership that improves the health status and access of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders in the United States, its territories, and freely associated states.

Kalihi-Palama Health Center is a full service outpatient health center. Staff serves patients in multiple languages including Ilocano, Tagalog, Visayan, Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, Samoan, Spanish, Laotian, and Tongan. KPHC’s vision is to be a leader in community-based health care, innovative and resourceful in its development of culturally sensitive programs and services that improve the overall health and well-being of its patients and communities.

The winning essays are available upon request and will soon be available on AAPCHO’s website,

Media Relations

Beverly Quintana
(510) 272-9536 x112

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