Programs In Action

We see the need for social advocacy and healing in the low-income community. In response, we partner with local leaders to foster restoration, healing, and hope.

Madre-A-Madre

15 years of building women's leadership through this grassroots empowerment program.

The Origin Story

Washington Elementary Principal Maria Evans probably knew she had a difficult assignment when she was assigned to a low-income inner-city elementary school in the heart of Downtown San Jose. Soon after arriving, she recognized underneath this low-performing school afflicted by poverty and gang violence, there was something special. It was community.

While there was a lack of money, resources, and education, there was a deep and powerful network of communal ties and strong families in this Latino neighborhood. Principal Evans tapped that power and nurtured it in a program called “Madre-A-Madre” (Mother to Mother).

Principal Evans selected community leader Maria Marcelo to lead the organization. It started out slowly, with only two or three moms showing up at meetings back in 2004. They relentlessly invited the mothers, and pretty soon four or five moms were coming, then 10-15, then 30, and eventually it grew to more than 80 moms on the best weeks.

Fifteen years later, Madre-A-Madre has gone through ups and downs, facing numerous challenges. Nonetheless, it still thrives today under Maria Marcelo’s leadership.

Madre-A-Madre Today

Today Madre-A-Madre continues to empower, educate, and encourage moms every week, just as it has done for the past 15 years. Each week we invite a speaker to come and present in Spanish on an important topic. We have invited immigration attorneys, physicians, mental health professionals, college and career counselors, pastors, community leaders. and prominent politicians. Some notable past presenters include San Jose Chief of Police Eddie Garcia, Mayor Sam Liccardo, US Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, Senator Jim Beall, and others.

As an official ministry of Healing Grove Health Center, Madre-A-Madre’s impact has outgrown Washington Elementary, and now aims to impact the city of San Jose. Check out the photos below for a pictorial history of this powerful program!

Women As Leaders In The Home And The Community

  • Women Empowerment

    • Empowering women to be leaders of their communities, schools, and families.
  • Trainings And Classes

    • Training women to be effective mothers and leaders.
  • Political Advocacy

    • Engaging women in political advocacy to systematically change their community for the better.
  • Community Building

    • Building community among women to help encourage healthy relationships
  • Local Organization Partnership

    • Women impacting the community through volunteering and partnering with other organizations.
  • Affecting Change In Policies

    • Women setting policy to make their communities safer and more affordable.
  • Young Women Mentorship

    • Empowering the next generation of women by mentoring young women from elementary school into college.

Arte De Vida

Families who have experienced Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) and childhood trauma learn to build resilience through this 6 week program.

Overcoming Trauma With Art

Arte De Vida (The Art Of Life) is a ministry of Healing Grove Health Center, helping parents and teens overcome and build resilience against the pain and trauma of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE).

Arte De Vida is a six-week program authored by Dr. Angela Bymaster, MD, an expert in Adverse Childhood Experiences. Dr. Bymaster was the author of a peer-reviewed paper on the subject.

Art In The Community

  • Bringing Families Together

    • Gathering parents and teens to talk honestly about the trauma in their past, guiding them toward holistic healing through Jesus-centered soul care.
  • Art That Sparks Conversations

    • Using art to spark conversations that lead to breakthroughs in healing. Oftentimes it is easier to express feelings through art which are hard to say verbally.
  • Facilitate Conversations

    • Facilitating conversations that help teens and parents identify adverse childhood events in their past, to experience healing through faith, and build resilience for a promising future.
  • Forgiveness Through Art

    • Practicing forgiveness can bring healing and life, clearing out the bitterness and pain that was previously there. It’s a complicated process but when done well, it is powerfully healing.

Health Care

Health Care is the most segregated industry in America. The wealthy get "wealth care" while the poor get "poor care". Through the Healing Grove Foundation, we're able to provide "wealth care" to the poor!

High quality health care for the poor

Low income uninsured members at Healing Grove Health Center receive the same top quality health care as our paying concierge members. Our low income members receive same day appointments, 30-60 minute appointments, and true healing from our Christian physicians. Our $70/month sponsorship program allows you to sponsor one low income uninsured patients to be able to access our clinic.

Health Care, Soul Care, Culture Care

  • Bringing healing to the family and the community

    • Low Income reduced fee members are asked to join as a family. We prioritize extremely low income families, making less than 30% of the average median income that live nearby Healing Grove’s center in downtown San Jose.
  • Serving the Blesseds

    • At Healing Grove, we’re passionate about providing the poor top quality health care, soul care and culture care. As Jesus said, “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.” It is our greatest honor to serve those who have the Kingdom of God. We understand that poverty hurts both soul and body. That’s why we prioritize bringing healing to both body and soul in the context of our member’s culture.
  • Speciality Care

    • Healing Grove offers comprehensive primary care at our facility. When uninsured patients need speciality care outside of what we provide, we work with a network of government and volunteer providers to help patients get the care they need at a price they can afford.
  • Medication

    • The cost of medication can be prohibitive for many low income patients. Our physicians are experts at finding medications that our patients can afford on limited incomes. We use a network of local pharmacies to get our patients the medications they need to thrive in life, at reduced prices or sometimes even for free!

Employment

Healing Grove currently has two employment programs that provide jobs & training for low income individuals that lost their jobs and fell behind on rent because of COVID-19. The project is funded through the United Against the Poverty Pandemic initiative (https://povertypandemic.org/)

Providing jobs and employment training

Tens of thousands of families were launched in poverty due to the COVID-19 shutdown because of job losses in sectors that employed families living in poverty. Healing Grove’s employment program provides hope to families that have been out of work for months!

Employment Program

  • 2 month paid employment cohorts

    • Healing Grove’s employment program provides participants a paid living wage 2 month training program.
  • Training

    • Participants are offered the following training certificates: Food Handler, COVID-19 Janitorial Sanitizing and chemical handling certificate, Forklift training, Driver License training (if needed), California Sexual Harassment certificate, resume work, mock interview training, job placement assistance, and career coaching.
  • Partnerships

    • Healing Grove’s employment training program is run in partnership with City Team, the City of San Jose, and a number of churches in Silicon Valley.

Women’s Groups

Our experienced pastoras bring spiritual healing and a stronger community by nurturing sisterhood and leadership among women.

No Estas Sola

One of the greatest silent pandemics of our time is loneliness.  So many people are alone, some of them even though they are physically near other people.

No Estas Sola (“You are not alone”) creates a safe space for women to share about their lives together.  Through laughter and tears, they learn to trust each other.  They grow spiritually and they gain confidence.  As loneliness and fear melt away, they find friendship, strength, and support.  They find that they are truly not alone.

Spiritual Care

  • Building Self-Esteem

    • Through No Estas Sola, women learn that they are valuable, that they are created in the image of God, that they can impact their families, their communities, and their world.
  • Transforming the Community

    • Women are key members of their communities.  They teach the kids, plan the celebrations, make much of the food and art in the home, and very much inform the local culture.  As women’s lives are transformed, the community is also transformed.
  • Prayer

    • Monday nights are devoted to prayer for all comers.  These nights have been well attended and the Holy Spirit has been present in a powerful way.
  • Couples Counseling

    • It is nearly impossible to find Spanish language marriage counseling, and when found, it is financially impossible for most low-income families.  At Healing Grove, Pastora Dania and several volunteers are bringing tools for healthier communication and healthier relationships to our community, in Spanish.  When parents are getting along, teens and children are happier, and the whole neighborhood experiences peace.

Prayer Ministry

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer." - Romans 12:12

Prayer Nights

Monday night is Prayer Night at Healing Grove.  Individuals and families gather for an evening of singing and silence, worship and petition.  Sometimes they memorize Psalm 23, sometimes they weep, sometimes they are full of praise.  People pray for healing, for difficult situations, for peace.  And they leave with their burdens lifted.

Prayer

  • Healing Prayer

    • Many people have come to prayer night with physical pain or medical problems, asking God for healing.  Many have testimonies of miraculous resolution of their symptoms, some instantaneously and others through successful surgeries or medical treatments.
  • Relationships

    • Couples on the brink of disaster have come to prayer together.  The Holy Spirit has brought humility, forgiveness, and softening of hearts to heal deep relational wounds.
  • Peace

    • “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
  • Freedom

    • We have had people who have experienced severe traumas released from their daily anxiety.  We have seen suicidal people freed from tortuous thoughts.  The Holy Spirit brings freedom and hope for a brighter future.

Youth Group

Teenagers are fascinating creatures. Full of life, full of emotions, full of wisdom and folly, they are simultaneously adults and children. They might be our favorite people.

Bible, Boba, and Bonfire

The Youth Group is led by a few of our very outstanding Youth, who designed the program, invite the kids, and run most of the show!  Every Friday night they sip Boba, play games, study the Bible, and talk about deep topics.  Sometimes they are laughing as they play hide and seek in the clinic in the dark, sometimes they are sharing their deepest fears.  They are an honest, quirky, fun-loving, down-to-earth bunch who are quickly becoming best friends.

Bringing Hope to Teens

  • Transforming Lives

    • When teenagers encounter the life of Jesus, their lives are transformed.  The world tells them to spend money on themselves, the Bible teaches about generosity.  The world tells them to compete for the best jobs, the Bible tells them to serve the “least of these.”  The world tells them to be entitled, the Bible teaches gratitude.  In every way, they are transformed into giving, respectful, thoughtful young people at peace in a difficult world.
  • Healthy Friendships

    • “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” -Proverbs 18:24
    • In the Youth Group, youth find other young people looking to better their lives and grow spiritually.
  • Growing in Character

    • “Make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.” – 2 Peter 1:5-7
  • Leadership

    • We aren’t kidding when we say the program was designed by the Youth.  We were not planning on having a youth group, but they made it happen and it is awesome!

Healthy Eating

Cooking classes help families lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

Taller de Cocina Amorosa

Many chronic diseases can be treated with a healthier diet. When people drink more water, eat more vegetables and fruit, avoid red meat, keep sodium intake at reasonable levels, and keep small portions of whole-grain carbs, they are healthier. We can improve or sometimes even eliminate high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, obesity, PCOS, and many other conditions with diet changes. Risks of many other diseases including cancer and osteoarthritis also decrease with a healthier diet.

Maria Marcelo and Briseida Perez designed our healthy cooking program, which teaches participants about nutrition and how to make healthier home-cooked meals which are also simple, tasty, and genuinely reflect their culture.

A Healthier Enchilada

  • Adding Vegetables

    • Spinach can be blended in with salsa verde for enchiladas.  Cauliflower can be chopped and steamed in place of rice or added to ceviche.  Cabbage, tomatoes, and onions can be sautéed and used in place of meat in tacos or burritos.  Soups can be heavy on vegetables and light on meat, and they don’t really need to have rice, potatoes, or noodles in them.
  • Altered Proportions

    • Eating double the beans and half the rice dramatically improves the healthiness of the dish.   Choosing water instead of soda, agua fresca, or juice significantly decreases the calories ingested.
  • Simple Substitutions

    • Chicken and fish can replace pork and beef in most dishes, improving cholesterol and cardiac health.  Our cooks are also finding more and more ways to showcase vegetables as central to the flavor and color of their dishes.
  • Snacks

    • Fruit is a great snack because it comes with its own “off button.”  Nobody eats too many cherries – their intestines won’t let them.  Nobody eats too much pineapple – their teeth won’t let them.  Fruit tells you when to stop.  Sweet desserts and salty snacks are bottomless pits and it can be easy to eat a lot of calories really fast.  Best to have lots of fruit on hand for snack attacks.

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Support our mission to encourage fullness of life for the most vulnerable in our community - donate or sponsor a Healing Grove membership today. Your giving directly impacts the health, livelihood, and dignity of neighbors most in need.

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