LOS ANGELES, CA – General Mills, Inc. is kicking off the second year of its three-year national, Hispanic, nutritional initiative, Mente Sana en Cuerpo Sano (Sound Body, Sound Mind), with a local awards dinner, tonight, for its Southern California community-based partners.  The dinner, which will take place at Cafe Pinot, downtown, will honor Los Angeles’ El Centro del Pueblo and Lucille Beserra Roybal Youth and Family Center, and Santa Ana’s Delhi Center. Each center will be receiving a $5,000 cash donation from General Mills. General Mills Salud Website

Developed last year as a community-relations initiative designed to encourage Hispanic families and children to incorporate tasty, healthy and nutritious foods into their lifestyle, over the past 12 months Mente Sana en Cuerpo Sano has developed into an important resource for the communities it serves. The program was created in part by General Mills’ nutritional research arm, the Bell Institute of Health and Nutrition, and the Boston-based Latino Nutrition Coalition, part of Oldways. It incorporates a 10-session curriculum on topics ranging from the importance of whole grain breads and cereals to things as essential as how to read the nutritional information labels that go on all food packaging.

Mente Sana en Cuerpo Sano is part of the company’s broader Hispanic platform, Que Rica Vida, which is its fourth year and together have created practical, culturally relevant materials in Spanish and English that help the Hispanic community combine the best of their healthy food traditions with the realties of life in the U.S. The grassroots program is currently available at nine community-based organizations (CBO’S) throughout Southern California, Northern California, Chicago and Houston.  (Que Rica Vida was developed by General Mills to help the Hispanic mother succeed in creating a healthier, easier, richer life for her and her family. The cornerstone of the Que Rica Vida initiative is its free quarterly magazine and website of the same name, www.quericavida.com).

A newly launched, state-of-the-art, Spanish-language website,  www.MenteSanaEnCuerpoSano.com, this year will allow families to access class schedules, review materials from classroom sessions and videos, and find upcoming Mente Sana events in their area. The website also includes an interactive consumer blog, and soon will host an interactive menu planning guide that will allow the consumer to select food items for a specific meal, offering detailed nutritional information for those selections.

“Mente Sana en Cuerpo Sano is an invaluable resource for the community that would not be possible were it not for the great support and involvement of our wonderful community-based partners,” said Kimberley Bow-Sundy, Multicultural Public and Community Relations Manager for General Mills. “Tonight’s event is meant to recognize the important role they play in serving their clientele, and show them our deep appreciation.”

Besides hosting tonight’s dinner, tomorrow, Mente Sana en Cuerpo Sano will present Chef Cristina Martin Del Campo at El Centro del Pueblo, 1157 Lemoyne St., in Los Angeles. A member of the Cocina Hispana of the famous Betty Crocker Kitchens, Chef Cristina will demonstrate several flavorful and healthy recipes, from 5 to 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public, and will include food, fun and prizes. Additional information available on www.MenteSanaEnCuerpoSano.com.

About Que Rica Vida

Now in its fourth year, the General Mills’ Que Rica Vida initiative is an important resource designed to provide Latina moms with culturally relevant lifestyle information and expert advice in Education, Holiday Occasions, Health & Wellness and Family – issues of great importance to Hispanic families in America.

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