Mohawk Valley Frontiers Club Receives Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Health Equity Award

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield recently awarded Mohawk Valley Frontiers Club a Health Equity Award of $30,000 to support “Paths to a Healthier Me.”

This program focuses on strengthening the mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing of students in communities of color.

Through the format of a wellness program, students and their family members are introduced to techniques and resources such as talk-therapy and workshops to address the stigma around mental health treatment, racial injustices, systemic racism, and finding support, as well as relaxation, stress relief tips, physical movement, and self-care.

“As we navigate through the pandemic, our students are adapting to a new normal that has heightened their thoughts and feelings of uncertainty, anxiety and insecurity,” said U’nice Elliott, president of Mohawk Valley Frontiers Club. “In an effort to combat these struggles, this program will focus on strengthening students’ mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing.”

The Mohawk Valley Frontiers is a dedicated volunteer civic service organization, established in 1971 in Oneida County. The local chapter strives to provide communities of color, in Utica and Rome, with programs and events that educate and uplift those in need of a hand up. A primary component of the Club’s effort is working with students in grades 4 through 12, Junior Frontiers, to foster participation in activities to build self-esteem, academic excellence, professional development, and civic responsibility.

“We are proud to further our commitment to health equity by supporting programs such as Mohawk Valley Frontiers Paths to a Healthier Me,” said Eve Van de Wal, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Utica regional president.

“Through their work, they are improving the health and quality of life for future generations in our communities. By funding these local initiatives, we support our mission of helping our members live healthier more secure lives by improving access to care, advancing specific health outcomes and improving health equity.”

Featured image: Excellus BCBS Utica regional president Eve Van de Wal presents Health Equity Award to Mohawk Valley Frontiers Club president U’nice Elliott.