Lessons Learned – September Meeting


Hi everyone,

Last Friday, we experienced a FIRST for Shaping Clay: we identified a common project on which to collaborate!

Before I say what it is, here’s some background. First, we reviewed county data and found that:

– Clay is the 7th most healthy county out of Florida’s 67 counties; St. Johns is #1; and Baker is #62.

– our rates of diabetes, smoking, physical inactivity, and obesity exceed those of St. Johns

– our access to medical care, recreational facilities, and healthy foods lags behind St. Johns, as well as behind the national average.

We agreed that we each know someone who is currently, or has been, affected by these problems and that each of us could help toward making it better. For example, Clay Writers could help tell the story; the military museum could help us get the word out to veterans and other groups; etc…

Then we agreed to focus on transportation as an issue to enhance, and to pool our efforts toward the following action items:

  •  identify the current transportation deserts
  •  map the current “formal” transportation services
  •  identify “informal” transportation services (i.e., church buses, vans, volunteers, etc)
  •  identify potential mobile food and health care resources
  •  arrive at some action steps to pilot with The Way Clinic

The Way Clinic graciously offered to be the pilot site and their Community Health Education Coordinator (and Americorps Volunteer), Gardenia Duran, has graciously offered to coordinate. Using input from the meeting, Gardenia will draft a proposal, identify a potential timeline, and convene the first meeting, which will take place outside of Shaping Clay. Gardenia plans to visit each organization that was present at Friday’s meeting to better understand and integrate their needs and abilities. Definitely more to come on this. It will be exciting to track their progress, which I’ll do and will report back.

Ashley Smith-Juarez, Clinton Health Matters Initiative
Christy Fitzgerald, Organization Consultant
Karen Wintress, Utility Bill Checkup
Kim Govan, Nonprofit Center of Northeast Florida
Lindsay Stevens, Guardian ad Litem
Douglas Greenberg, Clay County Literacy Coalition
Maureen Jung, Clay County Writers
Cindy Pontrelli, Military Museum of North Florida
Andre Van Heerden, Mercy Network
Kathy Berger, Penney Retirement Community
Jeannie Galina, The Way Clinic
Gardenia Duran, The Way Clinic
Norma Scott, The Way Clinic
Beth Eifert, Shaping Clay
Amy Parker, Reinhold Foundation


We need your help!

At the end of the meeting, we also discussed the future of Shaping Clay. My family and I will be moving to St. Augustine in the Spring, which offers the perfect opportunity for some new energy.

If you are interested in helping to create the future for Shaping Clay, please call me at 904-703-9206. We would like the new Steering Committee to be in place by December so they can guide 2015.

Peace and joy –

Beth Eifert
Coordinator, Shaping Clay Helping Professionals’ Group