California Wine Country wine trade groups back farmworker COVID-19 vaccinations

A cooperative effort involving Sonoma County Winegrowers, Sonoma County Vintners, Sonoma County Farm Bureau, local community health centers including the West County Health Center, the Sonoma Valley Health Center, the Alliance Medical Center, Alexander Valley Health Care, and the Sonoma County Medical Association has resulted in to get thousands of COVID-19 vaccination doses to these agricultural and production workers throughout the region, the groups announced.

They stated that multiple vaccination sites are utilized through this collaboration in the county. The agricultural organizations coordinate weekly and, sometimes, daily with the community health centers to determine how many vaccines will be available that week and at what location. With that information, the agricultural organizations work with their ag and production partners to schedule appointments to ensure the greatest number of essential workers are vaccinated each day.

In addition to organizing the vaccine rollout for essential ag workers, the Sonoma County Vintners Foundation donated Apple iPad tablets and funding to each of the participating Community Health Centers to provide much needed technology for coordinating the logistics of vaccine program. The Sonoma County Grape Growers Foundation also donated funding.

Napa County Farm Bureau has partnered with St Helena Health Foundation in efforts to identify agricultural workers in Napa County for COVID vaccination.

Ag workers who are still in need of a COVID vaccine in Napa County can sign up using the St Helena Health Foundation Vaccine Interest Form at Employers will be contacted by the foundation as increased vaccine supplies are available.

Helen Russell, co-Founder and CEO of Marin-based Equator Coffees & Teas, will be keynote speaker at a Business Edge Briefings Series online event hosted by Dominican University of California in San Rafael on Wednesday, March 17, starting at 10 a.m. Pacific Time.

The breakfast meeting program -- "Five Things I've Learned About Running A Small Business During A Pandemic" -- is a 60-minute online class and conversation about the challenges that she and her management team have faced -- and overcome -- since the outbreak of COVID-19.

Tickets are $25. Details: 415-485-3202, or online.

Sonoma State University, water agencies, cities and social service organizations are working on the challenges surrounding homelessness and water quality.

Sean McNeil, deputy director of environmental services with the city of Santa Rosa, is part of the new collaboration with SSU’s Center for Environmental Inquiry called Rising Waters. In addition to the Center and City of Santa Rosa, the group includes the Russian River Watershed Association, Sonoma County Water Agency, North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board, West County Health Centers, and the city of Rohnert Park.

In September 2020, the center convened two workshops with 32 regional leaders in academics, health, social services, water provision, and water regulation to explore cross-sector solutions.

Rising Waters is a new initiative emerging from a seven-year partnership between the center and the water agency that engaged 50 faculty and over 3,000 students in studies targeting water pollution, flood, drought, and conservation. Rising Waters takes that collaboration further, establishing as its measure of success the meaningful improvement in water-related sustainability and resilience challenges of the North Bay. The first two years of the three-year initiative are made possible with funding by Sonoma Water, RRWA and private donor Alexander Leff.

World Centric releases compostable molded fiber cutlery as an alternative to plastic and wood cutlery. (courtesy of World Centric)
World Centric releases compostable molded fiber cutlery as an alternative to plastic and wood cutlery. (courtesy of World Centric)

World Centric in Rohnert Park announced a new and unique collection of certified compostable molded fiber single-use cutlery and serving utensils. This collection of wood-free, plastic-free products provides the foodservice industry a more environmentally-conscious option to traditional disposable cutlery and serving utensils and is suitable for a broad range of common food serving and meal prep uses, the firm stated.

World Centric is the first in North America to offer molded fiber cutlery for use in the disposable foodservice industry. In the U.S., over 100 million plastic utensils are used daily, and over 27 million tons of plastic end up in U.S. landfills each year. Traditional plastic utensils are made from petroleum, are too small to be recycled easily, and will never decompose.

Napa County Fire Department's annual chipping program has begun. Residential properties within the unincorporated areas are eligible for this free program designed to help property owners comply with state and local defensible space requirements.

Residents wishing to take part in the program are asked to pile their vegetative material within five feet of a road or driveway on level ground or the uphill side of the road. All blunt ends must face towards the road or driveway and the piles must be free of all roots, stumps, rocks and dirt. Each pile must not exceed a maximum height of 6 feet and material in the piles can be no greater than 6 inches in diameter.

Piles will not be chipped if they contain any of the following materials: all varieties of broom, poison oak, blackberries, vines or anything with thorns, foreign materials or non-vegetative items, root balls, stumps, dirt, or twigs, piles of leaves, pine needles or yard clippings

Once all piles are stacked and ready for chipping, property owners are asked to complete an online form. Once it is completed and submitted, county crews will arrive to chip material within four to six weeks.

The chipper program is a cooperative endeavor between the county of Napa and the Napa County Fire Department. The program is sponsored by the Napa County Board of Supervisors at a cost of approximately $150,000 per year.

Doctors Company Foundation has announced that it is accepting grant proposals through March 22 for innovative patient safety projects. Each year, the Foundation supports patient safety education for healthcare professionals and patient safety research with clinically useful applications by funding projects aimed at reducing or eliminating risk of adverse events.

The foundation has provided over $6 million in grants for patient safety research and educational training. Grant recipients include the National Patient Safety Foundation (now the Institute for Healthcare Improvement) for developing guidelines on root cause analysis, Northwestern University for The Effect of Clinical Reasoning Feedback on Hospital Medicine Physicians and Residents, and the University of California, San Francisco, for The Family Input for Quality and Safety Study.

Sonoma Valley Vintners & Growers Alliance has launched a new marketing program and campaign called Sonoma Valley Presents. With an aim to support our wine and tourism industry, drive consumer engagement and sales, the campaign will take place through the late winter/non-peak travel, and spring months. The campaign highlights three months of uniquely curated wine experiences from March to May where wine lovers and tourists can visit Sonoma Valley and partake in different wine tastings and exciting experiences within three themes including wine and food, library wine tastings and spring release wines.

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