Building Pediatrician Capacity to Address Food Insecurity
Held May 3rd, 2022 – Attendees learned about screening for food insecurity as well as met District resources.
Building Pediatrician Capacity to Address Food Insecurity
Opening Remarks and an Overview of the Evening
MD, FAAP, President of DC AAP
Dr. Jarvis is a pediatric emergency medicine physician at Children’s National Hospital (CNH) and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics for The GWU School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Washington, DC. She serves as the Director of Advocacy and Health Policy for the Division of Emergency Medicine and Child Health Advocacy Institute Affiliate Faculty for CNH. She is the current President of the DC Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Jarvis is an Associate Program Director and the Curriculum Taskforce Chair for the Academic Pediatric Association’s Health Policy Scholar’s Program. She also serves on the DC Mayor Bowser’s Thrive By Five Coordinating Council and Domestic Violence Fatality Review Board.
MD, FAAP, MPH, IBCLC and Secretary of DCAAP
Dr. Rethy is the Spring Symposium Co-coordinator. She is the Division Chief of Community Pediatrics at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Georgetown University School of Medicine. She serves as Medical Director of both the Kids Mobile Medical Clinic, and the FITNESS programs. She also serves as Director of Medical Education for Community Pediatrics and Program Director for the Community Pediatrics and Child Advocacy Fellowship. She is a Co-Investigator and Clinical Lead for MedStar’s DC Safe Babies Safe Moms, a five-year healthy systems transformation and research collaborative to decrease inequities for mothers and young children in the District of Columbia. Other areas of interest and health services research include social determinant of health screening and response in the primary care setting, childhood nutrition and family health, health IT and universal asthma screening through a universal electronic asthma decision support tool. She serves on multiple hospital and university committees and for the AAP serves on the DC AAP Executive Committee as Secretary and CATCH Co-Facilitator and nationally as a COACH for the Section on Childhood Obesity.
Keynote Speaker – Kofi D. Essel
Screening for Food Insecurity in the Pediatric Setting: Why we must and how we can.
Kofi D. Essel
MD, MPH, FAAP
Dr Essel is a board-certified community pediatrician at Children’s National Hospital in Washington, D.C. Dr. Essel serves as Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, the Director of the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences Culinary Medicine Program, the Director of the GWU Community/Urban Health Scholarly Concentration, and the Director of the GWU Clinical Public Health Summit on Obesity. Dr. Essel has dedicated his career to advocacy/research around healthcare training, health disparities, and community engagement, with expertise and national recognition in the areas of addressing obesity and food insecurity in families. Most recently, Dr. Essel co-authored a national toolkit with the AAP and the Food Research & Action Center designed for pediatric providers to better address food insecurity in their clinical settings. Please welcome Dr. Kofi Essel as our keynote tonight.
Marth’s HaAn informational panel providing practical guidance on referrals and enrollment to critical food access programs. Presenters include:
Capital Area Food Bank
Susan Topping to kick off the panel. Bio: As the Sr. Director of Food, Policy and Impact, Susan oversees the nutrition education and nutrition policy of the Capital Area Food Bank. Susan develops strategic partnerships with healthcare and workforce development institutions. Through these partnerships her team tests and evaluates innovative interventions that address the root causes of hunger.
DC Central Kitchen
Ja’Sant Brown. Bio: As DC Central Kitchen’s Chief Impact Officer, Ja’Sent Brown spearheads the organization’s programming, including program implementation, workforce development, education, and measuring our impact on the community. Ja’Sant joined the DC Central Kitchen team in 2020, bringing with her a successful track record of program implementation, grants management, programmatic “start-up to success”, government and community relations. Ja’Sent has worked for over 13 years in DC Government programs addressing the needs of underserved families and individuals. Ja’Sent received her BA in English at the University of the District of Columbia, and a Masters in Social Work at Walden University. Outside of DC Central Kitchen, Ja’Sent spends many volunteer hours serving the community through her sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, the Homeless Children’s Playtime Project, and Girl Scouts of America. She is the proud mother of two children, and wife of an MPD police officer.
DC Health’s Women, Infant and Children (WIC)
Akua “Odi” Boateng MS RDN LD. Bio: Akua Odi Boateng is a Registered Dietitian and the Current WIC State Director for DC. She has over 10 years of experience working with WIC Families in the District. She was formerly the Director of the WIC Program at Mary’s Center. Where she embarked on projects to help improve the WIC experience for families, so they see WIC as a valuable partner in the growth and development of their children. She revitalized the day-to-day operations of the Mary’s Center WIC program to ensure ease of access to WIC Services for all eligible residents of the District of Columbia. In April 2017, she was awarded the NWA Leadership Award from the National WIC Association for outstanding accomplishments in the leadership of a WIC program.
DC Human Services’ SNAP
Michael Ribar is a Deputy Administration at the District of Columbia’s Department of Human Services (DHS) overseeing policy, training, and quality assurance of the District’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and cash assistance programs. Prior to joining DHS in 2019, Michael worked at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service as a senior advisor on SNAP policy, process, and technology improvements.
DC Hunger Solutions
Beverley Wheeler: Beverley Wheeler, EdD, became the Director of D.C. Hunger Solutions in 2015 to further its mission to end hunger in the nation’s capital. The work is done by ensuring the highest and best use of federal nutrition programs through advocacy, policy implementation and direct service.
Food & Friends
Tori Carney is the Partnerships & Intake Manager at Food & Friends. She manages the referrals, intake, and enrollment process with our clients coming through Medicaid. Tori first became passionate about food and health care through working as the Referral and Volunteer Assistant at the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona, in Tucson. She received a Bachelor of Arts in International Languages and Cultures with a concentration in Spanish and Latin American Studies from St. Mary’s College of Maryland in 2017.
Camille Range is a registered dietitian nutritionist who empowers families and communities to lead healthy lives through nutrition, health, and wellness. Camille served as a program manager for several obesity and public health programs promoting positive health behavior changes in Hispanic and African American mothers, daughters, and families. Currently, Camille is the community dietitian at Martha’s Table and her research focuses on policy change and solutions to address racial and health inequities in major urban food systems.
DC AAP Grant & DC’s Innovative Food Access Programs in Pediatrics — A panel on the multi-sector collaboration to improve enrollment in WIC in the District as well as an opportunity to hear more about innovative interventions in private care settings.
Caron Gremont, moderator, is the Director, Early Childhood at Share Our Strength No Kid Hungry, where she leads the efforts to reduce food insecurity among children under the age of five. This work includes strengthening national nutrition programs, like WIC, SNAP and CACFP, empowering pediatricians and the health care system, and child care centers to improve screening and supports for families struggling with food insecurity and authentically engaging families and the community in solutions that make sense for them. Before this, she served as the Senior Director, Healthy Eating at Martha’s Table, a Washington D.C.-based non-profit committed to ensuring every child, regardless of zip code, has the opportunity for their brightest future.
Karen Ganacias, MD – DC AAP/ MedStar Georgetown – AAP grant on barriers and opportunities for increasing WIC enrollment in DC. Dr. Ganacias is a fellow with the Division of Community Pediatrics at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital. Prior to her fellowship, she served in the US Navy and was in private practice in Maryland. Her work with the Division has included multiple grants, initiatives, and public health research projects involving: food insecurity, maternal and infant disparities, asthma symptom universal screening and education, and COVID19 vaccine access.
Sara Beckwith MS, RDN, LD serves as the bureau chief of the Nutrition and Physical Fitness Bureau at the DC Department of Health. Sara and her team are charged with strategic planning, implementation, and evaluation for a portfolio of federal and local food access and education programs reaching District residents across the lifespan. Sara earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology at University of Indianapolis, Master of Science in Nutrition and Food Science at Auburn University, and completed a dietetic internship at Virginia Commonwealth University Health System.
Janine Rethy, MD – MedStar Georgetown’s Pediatrics Healthy Children and Families Meal Delivery. Dr. Rethy is the Division Chief of Community Pediatrics at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Georgetown University School of Medicine. She serves as Medical Director of both the Kids Mobile Medical Clinic, and the FITNESS programs. She also serves as Director of Medical Education for Community Pediatrics and Program Director for the Community Pediatrics and Child Advocacy Fellowship. She is a Co-Investigator and Clinical Lead for MedStar’s DC Safe Babies Safe Moms, a five-year healthy systems transformation and research collaborative to decrease inequities for mothers and young children in the District of Columbia.
Susan Topping – Food Bank Pharmacy at CNMC: Bio – As the Sr. Director of Food, Policy and Impact, Susan oversees the nutrition education and nutrition policy of the Capital Area Food Bank. Susan develops strategic partnerships with healthcare and workforce development institutions. Through these partnerships her team tests and evaluates innovative interventions that address the root causes of hunger.
Dessert and Networking Introduction
Nia Imani Bodrick
MD, MPH, FAAP
Dr. Bodrick is a general pediatrician at Children’s National Hospital THEARC and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences. She is the Vice President/President-Elect of the DC Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Bodrick’s areas of interest include strengthening resilience in communities, early childhood mental health and nutrition education.
Stretch your legs, grab some dessert, and meet the participating organizations 1:1. In addition to the resources you have already heard from tonight, we have some additional organizations in the room:
- Babyscripts – This is the digital app that the Chapter has partnered with to innovate around educating and promoting DC WIC.
- Mahmee is a second digital app that DC WIC has partnered with to innovate around enrollment in their program.
- District Direct – an app the DC Government has created to help DC residents find resources. Stop by to talk to Michael about SNAP and District Direct.