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  • Shirley Harriman

Antelope Valley Partners In Health to Develop Antelope Valley Hope Center

Lake Los Angeles – Antelope Valley Partners for Health (AVPH) established in 1999 has been actively supporting and servicing the community of Lake Los Angeles for approximately three years and plans to expand their presence in this community during the year 2018.

Michelle Fluke, AVPH Executive Director, said “For the past few months, AVPH has been working on The Antelope Valley Hope Center to be located in Lake Los Angeles at the Saddleback School Campus at 150th Street East and East Avenue O.

“The Hope Center will be a transitional social rehabilitation center serving up to 291 people, family units or individuals. We will be offering case management services and finding permanent housing for our clients. “Among the services we will be providing are medical, mental health, substance abuse dual diagnosis, detox area, vocational training, community garden, laundry, barber and salon and childcare. Vocational training will include auto, handyman, barber and salon.”

AVPH is in the process of obtaining a new conditional use permit (CUP) for the facility and securing funding. The plan is in place and the funding can proceed. AVPH will apply for state licensing through the California Department of Social Services. The plan is to open mid-year 2018. The plan proposal cites background of the Antelope Valley, the explosive growth in population in both the two cities of Palmdale and Lancaster plus the unincorporated areas for which the needed accompanying services has not kept up.

The Antelope Valley is roughly 60 miles from Los Angeles and encompasses approximately 2,500 square miles. The estimated population is 520,690, 400,000 of that population figure lives in either Palmdale or Lancaster. The other 120,000 community residents live within the unincorporated areas. The growth has resulted in multiple demographic and cultural shifts within each community.

Health statistics are highly concerning. Several service providers has been involved in the analysis of those statistics and held seminars and think tanks to define where and what type of health services are needed. In the area 35% of adults are obese and over 10% of adults have been diagnoses with diabetes. The Antelope Valley has the highest rates of obesity across all of Los Angeles County. Hypertension, high cholesterol and substance abuse are areas of concern. Other dynamics of serious concern are the prisons, offenders and early release of inmates which added to the homeless population.

AVPH services are many and varied. AVPH has established and maintained strong collaborative relationships with AV Community Clinics, Kaiser Permanente, multiple schools and school districts, Public Health and Antelope Valley Hospital and other fellow non-profits.

AVPH proposes a 3-prong approach to the great need for housing, supportive services and case management for people: 1. assessment and case management services, 2. emergency services and 3. transitional services.

The plan will be discussed with the community at the next Lake Los Angeles Rural Town Council (LLARTC) meeting on Tuesday, February 27 in the Lake Los Angeles Community Gymnasium starting at 7:00pm. The plan and plot plans will be explained to residents.

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