What is the Petaluma Health Center?

January 28, 2019
A Student standing with a shovel in a garden

Student Volunteer at Community Garden

Pam Rivas
Pam Rivas

Accessibility. Quality Care. Healthy Communities. These are just a few of the many values we carry in our mission statement over at the Petaluma Health Center. As this year’s AmeriCorps VISTA for PHC and Sonoma State University, I can honestly say that these values are embedded in every aspect of the organization, from project development down to a patient’s interaction with front desk staff.

As a liaison between PHC and SSU, I’m responsible for recruiting students for volunteer work and internships. Being a recent graduate of SSU, connecting students with opportunities for career exploration or professional development is very important to me, especially as someone with a degree in the Arts and Humanities. Many of the students I have worked with have actually transitioned from volunteers to interns. My goal is to create a steady school-to-career pipeline where students feel secure about the post-undergrad transition.

Related: Welcome Pam, Elizabeth, & Suzie!

Petaluma Health Center has many programs that I help supervise. Our weekly Food Pantry happens every Monday morning at 9am where volunteers help hand out fresh produce and healthy foods for community members and patients at no cost. Tuesday evenings I serve as the Site Coordinator for Earn it, Keep it, Save it! at our Rohnert Park location, an IRS certified program which allows qualifying community members to get their 2018 taxes prepared for free. Additionally, I lead our “100% Campaign”, a program which partners PHC and the Rohnert Park-Cotati Unified School District to to ensure that children grades K-8 are insured and have a designated healthcare provider. Lastly, I collaborate with our Spanish-speaking patient advisory council, a group made up of dedicated PHC patients who provide feedback and innovative ideas to keep our organization at the forefront of high-quality healthcare.

I believe Petaluma Health Center’s spot in the top 1% for best health centers in California is attributed to our commitment to creating healthy communities through accessible, quality care.

If you share our values, get involved today! We are always seeking volunteers and interns who are passionate about creating strong and healthy communities. To get started, please visit our online volunteer application or contact me at privas@phealthcenter.org or 707-559-7500 ext. 1884.