Chris Paul and Kaiser unveil new computer labs to Watts students
Partnership brings technology, focus on mental health to underserved schools
OW Staff Writer | 6/29/2017, midnight
Kaiser Permanente, in partnership with the Chris Paul Family Foundation, awarded a $100,000 grant to refurbish and equip two computer labs at elementary schools in the Watts neighborhood. The healthcare provider also brought something just as important to the students in this underserved community in South Los Angeles: lessons on how to cope with stress, bullying and other tests of their mental health.
“Success in life requires you to train the body and the mind,” said NBA All-Star and Kaiser Permanente Total Health Ambassador Chris Paul. “The Chris Paul Family Foundation is proud to partner with Kaiser Permanente to bring vital learning technology and resiliency skills to kids in the Watts community.”
At a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Compton Avenue Elementary School, Paul and Gwen Tyson, counselors from the nearby Kaiser Permanente Watts Counseling and Learning Center, teamed up to lead a workshop designed to teach coping skills to children in the community.
“We’re honored to partner with Chris Paul to bring the children of Watts the tools they need to maximize their minds, bodies and spirits,” said Julie Miller-Phipps, president of Kaiser Permanente Southern California. “Kaiser Permanente is committed to improving the total health of communities like Watts by improving the area’s educational resources as well as its health resources—and that includes mental health resources.”
The two organizations’ grant purchased computers, monitors, printers and software to a pair of computer labs at Compton Avenue Elementary School and Lovelia P. Flournoy Elementary School. In addition to the equipment, the money also helped the schools completely rejuvenate the labs with new furniture and paint.
“These two new computer labs are beautiful additions to our schools and our community,” said Christopher Downing, superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Local District South. “Kaiser Permanente and the Chris Paul Foundation are helping us educate our children with the technology they’ll need to succeed in the workforce of the future and the mental health and coping skills they’ll need to succeed in life.”
Kaiser Permanente’s commitment to the Watts community goes back more than half a century. Just minutes away from the two elementary schools, Kaiser Permanente’s Watts Counseling and Learning Center provides mental health and educational resources for children and families in Watts and the surrounding communities. The Center, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary, is funded by Kaiser Permanente Southern California as a Community Benefit program. Families do not need to be Kaiser Permanente members to utilize the Center’s services.