It’s been a few weeks — you know what that means! Meet the Faces of New Generation Health Center: Part 3! I am especially excited to introduce these women because they have written several awesome blogs for JustAskShawna. So without further adieu meet Barbara, Angela, and Mei-Lani.
I’m Barbara and I’ve been at NGHC since the end of September. I have never worked in any other health clinics– this is my first! I have always loved working with women and young people, and enjoy the more personal nature of reproductive health. Many young people have not yet had to deal with many medical issues, and so this particular kind of health is a key avenue into caring for our bodies and our relationships. It also inherently brings up many emotional and relationship-related issues for people, and I have a background in counseling and psychology so I find this super stimulating with every new client. I learned to speak Spanish five years ago when I lived with a host family in Argentina for a year.
In my spare time, I love to have conversations, cook, bake, travel and explore the outdoors. I particularly love camping, swimming and lying flat on my back in the sun on a nice grassy patch or stretch of beach. Dinner parties are also a favorite. I grew up on two islands (my mom on one and my dad on the other) in the Puget Sound, near Seattle. Then I went to college in a little school upstate from New York City. I don’t really remember any particular classes in school on reproductive health, other than vaguely covering the basics in health class. From this I sort of think my school must have had a pretty hands-off philosophy when it came to sex-ed. Luckily my mom was more than happy to share way too much with me from a very young age.
Hola, my name is Angela! I joined the New Gen team in September as a Health Educator and am excited to support SF youth in taking charge of their sexual health. I’ve spent most of my life in the Bay Area, except for stints in South Africa, Pennsylvania and New York. In college I took classes on female sexuality and felt empowered to know how to keep my body, mind, and relationships healthy. After working as an outdoor educator for 3 years, I decided to switch gears and pursue my passion for sexual health. I worked at the Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force and earned a Masters degree in Health Education. Outside of work, I like to spend my time dancing, hiking and playing with my cats Muenster and Brie.
Hey there, my name is Mei-Lani. I’m a volunteer Health Educator that you might see in the clinic or maybe out in your school. I grew up loving the snow in Alaska, but moved to San Francisco for the culture, community, and to be around my family. I speak Spanish even though I am half Chinese. When I’m not in the clinic, you might find me out biking, cooking, running around outside, doing yoga, or taking pictures.
I got into working with teens after doing research with Chilean teens about what influenced their decisions on birth control and sexual health. It made me think a lot about how in the US there isn’t enough good info or comfortable teachers for teens to learn about sex. All I can remember about my high school sex ed was a handout on the pill and a teacher who passed around cauliflower to tell us that it was like genital warts (I still have a hard time eating cauliflower). I’m happy to be here to give you all the right info that lets you make your own decisions over your own health.
Aren’t these ladies awesome?? If you see them around the clinic don’t hesitate to say hello or ask them any questions you may have. Next month you’ll meet Jenny, Leslie, and Tino!!! Stayed tuned!
And from everyone here at NGHC, we hope you have a wonderful and safe Memorial Day weekend!
In happiness & health,