Population Served
Proudly Designed in the USA
by
Nex Graphics
2007
The Need:

Almost 42% of the young people in Los Angeles County are overweight or obese. These children and teens possess a higher risk for obesity, diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, high cholesterol, and cancer, as well as social, emotional and educational struggles. Most of our students do not receive nutrition education, and have only limited access to adequate recreational opportunities in school or in their park-poor neighborhoods. In addition, language barriers often prevent parents and their children from acquiring the nutrition knowledge they need to be healthy, and families are often underinsured and lack access to health care professionals.

Our Population:

In 2016, SOSMentor provided over 28,000 students from elementary school through high school in the Los Angeles Unified School District with nutrition and physical activity education. Our target population comprises low-income children and teens, 73% of whom are Hispanic and 10% African American. Over 70% of the students in the schools we serve are on the Federal Free and Reduced Lunch Program.

During SOSMentor’s programs, students also learn to advocate for health with their families, friends and schools, creating a healthier environment for all. For example, middle school students in the Take Action program create a service-learning project that makes a healthy environmental change in their schools. In addition, students in the Healthy Schools Campaign bring home nutrition information and complete an activity called Students Teaching Families, in which the students and their families work together to make healthy changes in their homes and communities.

In 2016, SOSMentor partnered with Dignity Health Northridge Hospital to address the stigma of being overweight within the greater school community and reduce incidents of bullying. Over 14,000 students in 21 schools participated in the year-long pilot program. The program’s fun educational activities and research-based curriculum engage students, teachers, administrators, and families in creating a school culture of acceptance, tolerance, unity and respect. Nikko Castaneda, a 6th grader at Woodland Hills Academy, learned that “If we can stand up for what’s right and be kind and be nice to other people, we can influence others in our school to make the future of our school better.”

Our Success Stories:

Participants are empowered to make permanent, effective lifestyle changes for themselves and their families. During SOSMentor’s programs, children and teens learn how to eat healthy and exercise, and with the support of their families, they turn their lives around.

When entering the SOSMentor program at Hollywood High School, Alex Yarza was a 220-pound teen with dangerously high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. His mother would cry because she didn’t “know if [he] would be awake the next day.” Alex cut out junk food, exercised and was able to reach a healthy weight.

Jasmine Barcia was 180 pounds with diabetes that ran in the family. She was told that if she couldn’t take control of her health she “would be another one of [her] family members that died off.” Jasmin’s mother said, “Before the program I do not know what is good, what is not good. She told me how to eat. Now we do exercise together.” Jasmine made healthy lifestyle changes and made the cheerleading team at her school.

Johnny Amaya, a recent participant in our Healthy Athletes Program, said, “My entire family has problems with being overweight. I’m trying to lose weight. Ever since this program started I’ve been eating better. I stopped eating fast food.” His parents, who work at night, used to take him to the taco stand or burger joint for dinner. But with his encouragement, “they started making home-cooked meals like salad and chicken.” “Things are getting better,” he said.

Ana Contreras at Polytechnic High School has early symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes and anemia. She took SOSMentor’s program because, as she said, “I need to learn how to take care of myself.” Ana’s grandmother started making healthy meals for Ana and her grandfather, who also has diabetes. Ana now brings healthy snacks to schools so “she can eat healthier throughout the day” instead of resorting to junk foods prevalent on campus. She is excited about the changes she and her family are making and feels more energetic.

“Healthy eating and physical activity not only improved my life, it could’ve very well saved it,” says Nia McClinton, a 10th grader at Carson Academy of Education and Empowerment. Before participating in the Healthy Athletes Program, Nia lived in a “sugar-full” world. Although both her grandmother and father are diabetic, she was not aware of what she was eating and lived a “borderline unhealthy lifestyle.” The Healthy Athletes Program helped her make important healthy changes like eating breakfast and eliminating sugar. Now, she has “more energy and feels fit and confident and even experienced a boost in self-esteem.”
Spring 2017
Mendez High School and Utah Elementary School
Lincoln High School and Gates Elementary School
Hamilton High School and Breed Elementary School
Wilson High School and Multnomah Elementary School

Fall 2016

Sylmar Biotech Health Academy and Olive Vista Middle School
Hamilton High School and Shenandoah Elementary School

Spring 2016

Mendez High School and Utah Elementary School
Lincoln High School and Gates Elementary School
Hamilton High School and Breed Elementary School
Wilson High School and Multnomah Elementary School

Fall 2015
Sylmar Biotech Health Academy and Olive Vista Middle School

Spring 2015

Mendez High School and Utah Elementary School
Wilson High School and Multnomah Elementary School
Hamilton High School


Fall 2014

Stern MASS High School
Sylmar Biotech Health Academy and Olive Vista Middle School



SOSMentor’s mission is to empower underserved youth to make healthy choices. We deliver innovative nutrition and fitness education that inspires kids to advocate for health in their schools, families, and communities.
Imagine HEALTH

Fall 2016 and Spring 2017

Lawrence Middle School
Holmes Middle School
Portola Middle School
Patrick Henry Middle School

Fall 2015 and Spring 2016

Holmes Middle School
Patrick Henry Middle School
Lawrence Middle School
Woodland Hills Academy Middle School

Spring 2015
Maclay Middle School

Fall 2014
Sutter Middle School
Portola Middle School
Lawrence Middle School
Mulholland Middle School


Take Action for a Healthy School Community
Spring 2013
Hamilton High School
Hollywood High School
Jefferson High School
Monroe High School
Roybal High School
Santee Education Complex
University High School
Venice High School
Wilson High School

Spring 2014
Hollywood High School
Carson Education Complex
Los Angeles High School
Jefferson High School
East Valley High School
Polytechnic High School
Arleta High School

Fall 2016
Polytechnic High School
East Valley High School
Arleta High School
Jefferson High School


Fall 2015

East Valley High School
Polytechnic High School
Arleta High School


Spring 2015

Los Angeles High School
Jefferson High School
Hamilton High School
Robert F. Kenny High School
Gertz-Ressler High School
Franklin High School

Fall 2014
East Valley High School
Polytechnic High School
Arleta High School
Healthy Athletes  Programs
Spring 2010
Gertz-Ressler High School and James Merkin Middle School
Los Angeles Academy of Arts and Enterprise (LAAAE) and LAAAE Middle School

Fall 2009
Belmont High School and Union Avenue Elementary School
Birmingham High School and Lemay Street Elementary School
Garfield High School and 4th Street Elementary School

Summer 2009
Santee Education Complex and San Pedro Elementary School

Spring 2009
Canoga Park High School and the Boys and Girls Club of West Valley
Los Angeles High School and Queen Anne Elementary School
Birmingham Charter High School and Lemay Street Elementary School
Belmont High School and Union Avenue Elementary School

Fall 2008
Santee Education Complex and San Pedro Elementary School
Miguel Contreras Learning Complex and Gratts Elementary School

Spring 2008

Garfield High School and 4th Street Elementary School
Santee Education Complex and San Pedro Elementary School

2007
Santee Education Complex and San Pedro Elementary School

2006
Belmont High School
Fall 2013
Jefferson High School and Wadsworth Elementary School
Helen Bernstein High School and Santa Monica Community School
El Segundo High School and Richmond Elementary School
Sylmar Biotech Health Academy and Sylmar Elementary School
Alliance Gertz Ressler and Downtown Value School

Fall 2012

University High School and Brockton Elementary School
Hollywood High School and Selma Elementary School
Monroe High School and Gledhill Elementary School
Wilson High School and Multnomah Elementary School
UCLA YouthSource Center and Beethoven Elementary School

Spring 2012

University High School and Brockton Elementary School
Hollywood High School and Selma Elementary School

Fall 2011
Belmont High School and Castro Middle School
James Monroe High School and Gledhill Elementary School


Spring 2011
The Children’s Center of the Antelope Valley

Fall 2010
Birmingham Charter High School and Lemay Street Elementary School
Canoga Park High School and the Boys and Girls Club of West Valley
Carson High School and James White Middle School
Hollywood High School and Selma Avenue Elementary School
James Monroe High School and Gledhill Street Elementary School
Santee Education Complex and San Pedro Elementary School
University High School and Brockton Avenue Elementary School


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