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Oklahoma City Indian Clinic Receives Grant to Open Food Center | Services

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma City Indian Clinic has received a $150,000 grant from Bank of America to open an Oklahoma City Indian Clinic and Bank of America Resource Center to provide food to Oklahoma Indians.

OKCIC is a nonprofit clinic that provides health and wellness services to Native Americans in central Oklahoma.

According to the latest data from Feeding America, 1 in 4 Native Americans are food insecure – a significantly higher proportion compared to the national average of 1 in 9 Americans. Oklahoma as a whole faces higher than average rates of food insecurity, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.

The new food center will serve 4,000 Native American homes within the first year and provide education about food and healthy eating through an evidence-based nutrition program. OKCIC is the largest urban Indian healthcare facility in the contiguous United States and the only Indian healthcare facility in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area. Serving over 22,000 patients from more than 200 recognized tribes, OKCIC is uniquely positioned to address food insecurity among Oklahoma’s Native Americans.

“OKCIC is committed to providing excellent health care to Native Americans, and we recognize that food insecurity can lead to adverse health outcomes,” said Robyn Sunday-Allen, OKCIC Chief Executive Officer. “We are grateful for this Bank of America grant because it will allow us to connect patients with the resources they need and improve health outcomes for Native American families across Oklahoma.”

People with chronic conditions may have specific dietary needs but lack access to the foods best suited to manage their conditions. By providing healthy, free food to patients, a foundation is laid to improve health outcomes that are directly related to chronic disease. In addition, OKCIC will include training on healthy eating with support from in-house nutritionists.

“Supporting our Native American community is consistent with our ongoing commitment to advance economic mobility and opportunity for people of all backgrounds,” said Tony Shinn, President of Bank of America Oklahoma City. “To complement the culturally sensitive health and wellness work that the Oklahoma City Indian Clinic is already doing, the Food Resource Center will go a long way in addressing food insecurity in our Native communities.”

The goals of the Oklahoma City Indian Clinic and Bank of America Resource Center include:

  • Increasing fruit and vegetable consumption
  • Improve nutritional knowledge and behavior
  • Promote healthy shopping and cooking
  • Promotion of a healthy body weight
  • Preventing or treating diabetes and other diet-related health problems
  • Creating an environment without the stigma of food insecurity

Food aid is OKCIC’s most requested resource. The addition of this food resource center should have a significant impact on Indian health, OKCIC officials said.

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