HealthCorps Interview: Calvin Lambert

Calvin Lambert

Guest post by HealthCorps Coordinator Nathan Allen.

Calvin Lambert is an exceptional HealthCorps Coordinator at a High School in Brooklyn, NY.  Apart from his brilliant work with HealthCorps, Calvin is known for having a laugh that can bring an entire room together.

Calvin is concluding is term with HealthCorps this year and has been admitted to several top-tier medical schools (which he asked to remain undisclosed, as his decision is still pending).  I was fortunate to find a short break in his world-changing to catch up and throw a few questions at him.

Nathan:  I read, on your phenomenal school blog, that you intend to start a program for students where you will serve as a positive male role model for students who may not have one. What will this look like?

Calvin: I envision a forum where young men can come and discuss issues that they are passionate about…there are lots of things these kids deal with day-to-day that they don’t get a chance to express and this will be a place to open up about these feelings. I also want to design workshops here to address things like how to be a gentleman, things like respect, attitude, being professional, sexual education…

I noticed how many guys don’t seem to have respect for themselves and a lot of the time these guys are not focused in the classroom. I know there is a reason for this. I want to give them an opportunity to talk about these things so I can understand and then try to pull the potential out of them.

Nathan: It seems that improving health in all communities requires multifaceted approaches. Some things Continue reading

Put Your Heart (Health) First

Happy post-Valentine’s Day! On a daily basis, all of us combine our compassion, charity, and action to serve our communities and nation. I consider “service” one of the greatest sources of happiness. Nonetheless, one must fully take care of their well being before attempting to care for others’. For the month of February, focus attention on the centerpiece of your love, compassion, and health—your heart.

5 Heart-Health Tips

1. Chocolate, Wine, and Berries… The Darker the Better

  • Dark chocolate, unlike milk or white chocolate, contains high amounts of catechins, a heart healthy antioxidant. Aim for chocolate with 70% or higher cacao.
  • Red wine, in comparison to other alcoholic beverages, contains more flavonoids and antioxidants. Two 4-ounce glasses of Continue reading

Skip the Gym Membership and Get Fit for Free

Who has a couple of New Years’ resolutions in mind for 2010?

I know I do.

In the spirit of healthiness, many Americans want to become more health conscious.  And health conscious resolutions usually involve a gym membership, diet, and “dream weight” on the scale.

However, as many of us start this New Year, we will have a tighter clutch on our wallets.  Save money by bypassing the gym membership and creating your own exercise at home or searching for free and low-cost fitness classes in your neighborhood. Break a sweat without breaking your bank and save money for better food shopping and your savings.

Gym Math:

Membership Fee: approx. $75

+ Monthly Fee: approx. $30

= Roughly $435 Per Year.

I am not bashing gyms.  I have a gym membership and regularly attend my gym but also replicate similar workouts in my Continue reading

Recipes for Healthy Holiday Eats and Treats

The holiday season is amongst us, which includes an ample dose of delicious celebratory foods and drinks. It can be hard to pass up egg nog, creamy dips, latkes, or any holiday food. And as a number one fan of my mother’s sugar cookies, I wouldn’t ask anyone to give up their indulgent holiday favorite.

However, several days ago, I contributed to a healthy holiday potluck gathering with fellow HealthCorps’ corps members. The spread of “healthified” and inexpensive options varied from creative appetizers to desserts and reaffirmed the notion that healthy holiday treats can extend beyond an entire table of carrots and yogurt dip. I’ve chosen several inexpensive, healthier, and delicious recipes to incorporate into your regular holiday fare this year. Follow the recipes to a “T” or create your own versions.

Spicy Sweet Potato Cakes and Guacamole

Ingredients:

  • 1 large sweet potato or yam, cooked and peeled
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and very thinly grated
  • ½ Jalapeno pepper, minced Continue reading

For Corps Members: Free or Low-Cost Gift Ideas for People You Love

homemade soap, wrapped in cloth

Giving gifts when you are a corps member.

Last year I wrote about how people can show love to the corps member in their life through their holiday gift-giving. This year I wanted to offer some ideas about how corps members themselves can give gifts when their incomes are often incredibly limited.

I asked The New Service contributors and currently serving corps participants Marissa Pherson of AmeriCorps VISTA and Leslie Dolland of Health Corps to share their thoughts, too. Here are the ideas we’ve collectively come up with.

Setting the Stage for Frugal Gift Exchange

If you are gathering many other corps members, extended family, or among a group of old friends, consider throwing a White Elephant party swapping gifts doesn’t have to be expensive when you’re swapping things you already own.

If you are exchanging gifts individually with others — your partner, close friends, family members, and/or fellow corps members — consider setting some ground rules such as: Continue reading

Staying Fit on a Budget: A Guide to Cheap and Healthy Supermarket Eats, Under $1.

Picture 1It’s fair to say the majority of us are feeling the economic squeeze these days.  Dollar menus, 32oz cup drinks, and vending machine selection goodies like B-12, A-3, and F-2 undoubtedly win hands down in terms of inexpensive snacks and/or meals.  However, although they may be light on the wallet their also light on nutritional value.  And they can turn into a problem if they’re the rule rather than the exception.

Don’t count out your local grocer, supermarket chain, or farmer’s markets.  They are chock-full with low-cost and nutritious eats for home, work, and play.

We often picture healthy food as either costing too much or tasting second-rate to their less-healthy counterparts.  You decide for yourself!  Check out this fantastic list of 20 healthy foods for under $1, courtesy of divinecaroline.com.

1. Oats: Sprinkled with nuts and/or fruit, oatmeal cookies.

2. Eggs: Boiled, scrambled, egg-salad sandwiches. Continue reading

Staying Fit on a Budget: Healthy Breakfast Know-How and Quick Ideas for Your Plate

Leslie Dolland

Leslie Dolland

[Editor’s note: Today we launch a new monthly column on The New Service blog, featuring Leslie Dolland, a HealthCorps Coordinator who teaches high schoolers in the South Bronx about staying healthy. As a current service corps participant, Leslie will be sharing tips for other corps members about how to stay healthy on a budget.]

I love the Fall and the back-to-school season!  It feels like a fresh start; a chance to de-clutter, re-organize and create some Fall New Year’s resolutions.  I’m resolving to have a healthy and delicious breakfast EVERY day.  This includes breakfast when I’m running late, not hungry, or not at home; these are times when it’s most difficult. Breakfast is definitely the meal not to be missed but can be challenging when you’re short on time.  Luckily, it doesn’t require much time or money just some careful planning!

But is it really the most important meal of the day?

YES!  And according to the USDA, 80% of Americans regularly eat breakfast. But the quality of the meal is just as Continue reading