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VAACC Sub-Grant Supports Nutrition Program For Seniors At Historically Black Neighborhood

Seniors at ‘Tranquility at the Lakes’ in Virginia Beach graduate from a 12-week nutrition program, supported by a VAACC sub-grant.




Seniors living at the ‘Tranquility at the Lakes’  housing complex on Burton Station Road recently graduated from a 12-week workshop on nutrition and healthy living. The class was instructed by Community of Destiny, Inc. Chef Grace Peart, who is also the President and CEO of the non-profit agency.

In partnership with the Virginia AfricanAmerican Cultural Center, Inc. and Sentara Healthcare, Community of Destiny, Inc. conducted the program which included  growing an herb and vegetable garden as a form of therapy and self empowerment.

The program was held in Burton Station, which is one of the 16  Historically Black neighborhoods in Virginia Beach experiencing insecurities such as medications, health screenings, understanding healthy eating, and related healthy aging practices.

The Graduation Ceremony was held July 14 at the housing complex and included an opening prayer by Bishop Vernon Mathews (Health and Wellness participant) and reading of a poem, “The Promise,” by Minister Rose Clemons (Health and Wellness participant). Dr. Sandra Gale, Hair Technology Center, was the Mistress of Ceremony:


The Keynote Speaker was  James A Toney Jr., Life Purpose Coach & CEO of SAGAB Group. Mrs. Doris Blount, Class leader and Health and Wellness participant, brought remarks.

Mrs. Angela Whitehead, Founder and CEO of Seniors Unlimited Lifestyles, Inc. & Executive Director of Programs and Services for Tranquility at the Lakes, spoke on the workshop’s impact on the seniors living at the complex.

Certificates of Completion were presented to the graduates by Chef Grace Peart, and Dr. Amelia Ross-Hammond, Councilwoman, Founder and Chairman, VAACC, Inc.  The VAACC awarded a subgrant to Community of Destiny, Inc. to support the 12-week program as part of a grant it received from Sentara Healthcare. The balance of the Sentara grant to VAACC was distributed to the Mountleads at Va.  Beach which is a Fatih-Based organization.

The Burton Station graduates who received certificates were Essie Bennett, Janice Ballard, Doris Blount, Vivian House, Sharon Hamilton, Gail Darby, Diane Benson, Marcia Smith, Daryl Williams, Sonia Johnson, Linda Scipio, Minister Rose Clemons, Connie Hodge, Joel Parks, Jeanette Summer, Catha Cuffee, and Bishop Vernon Matthews.

The Presentation of Certificates was followed by a Tour of the Herb Garden.


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