Guest Post: Are you the best YOU that you want to be?

Jun 28, 2017  •   Written by Erin Addington   •  no comments

Cyndia Estime and her fellow Spring 2016 Make a Difference! Leadership Academy graduates compiled the following information as their final community project. 

We can all agree that we all have a beginning and an end. Overall, everybody wants to live a good life, but how do we do that? It’s complicated yet simple. Our Leadership Academy group would like to share with you four areas we know can shape you to be your best you.

Great Character

These days, people are more open about being into themselves, which is great — it’s perfectly fine to love yourself. As amatter of a fact it’s essential, but remember to spread the love with others. Live a valuable life where people are amazed at your existence, just as you should be of theirs. Make every decision according to your core values:

  • Loyalty
  • Forgiveness
  • Respect
  • Thankfulness
  • Love
  • Serving others

These are just a few common ones. Think about which ones you come to agreement with and do a self-check to see if you’re truly living by them.

Here are a couple of links that may help you strengthen you character.


My dad told me as a little girl “everything you can touch costs money,” and to that I say I agree! To move forward in this life, money is needed. Even when something is free, we understand that it is only free to you because someone else paid for it. So how’s your relationship with money? Is money here for you in the good times and bad times? First, let’s make some money because face it, we all need money.

  1. Establish a way to make money. Think about what you are exceptional at doing and there’s your answer to making money. Once you find that out — don’t wait, go for it!
  2. Pay yourself first. When the checks start coming in, pay yourself first. It doesn’t matter the amount you decide to give yourself, you can always increase later on. You should not work just to pay bills. Put yourself first, then the bills.
  3. Save. Once your bills are paid, save, save, save. Again, the amount doesn’t really matter. The point is to start and keep it going. The money saved can be used for wedding that’s coming up or a sudden loss in the family; the new car you want or the flat tire on your current car; the vacation you want to go to; or the moment of unemployment that may come.
  4. Invest. Finally, find a way invest/grow your money. If money is going out, then money should be coming in.

Below are some links that may help you strengthen your relationship with money.

Open Position: Healthy Families Jacksonville Family Assessment/Support Worker Supervisor

Jun 26, 2017  •   Written by Erin Addington   •  no comments

The Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition is accepting applications for a Family Assessment/Support Worker Supervisor with the Healthy Families Jacksonville program.

Supervisor is primarily responsible for ensuring the quality of service provision by providing ongoing, reflective, professional, supervision of up to six staff on a weekly basis. Click here for the full job description.

Resumes and cover letters should be e-mailed to

Open Position: Healthy Families Jacksonville Administrative Assistant

May 30, 2017  •   Written by Erin Addington   •  5 comments

The Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition is accepting applications for an Administrative Assistant with the Healthy Families Jacksonville program.

The Administrative Assistant is primarily responsible for supporting the Program Manager, maintaining databases and performing general office duties. Click here for the full job description.

Resumes and cover letters should be e-mailed to

The Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition launches its new Volunteer Program

May 23, 2017  •   Written by Jerail Fennell   •  no comments

The Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition is excited to launch a new Volunteer Program. As we continue to grow, we are eager to give tomorrow’s healthcare professionals the opportunity to learn and work with women, babies and families in Northeast Florida. Our first volunteer cohort includes three interns who are working towards their Masters of Public Health degree, respectively.

Originally from Tennessee, Keri Pirtle holds a Bachelors in IMG_3650Health Science from Wichita State
University and will complete a Masters of Public Health in August 2017 from the University of New
England. Keri is a graduate intern with the Azalea Project, focusing on increasing recruitment and
participation of the group education sessions. She is most excited about working closely with clients to develop positive, sustainable plans for the future. Keri has over a decade of experience working with infants, children, and families, and will certainly put that to good use. Keri is a married, fur mom of one, who loves Tennessee Volunteer Football, Nashville Predators Hockey, and fitness.

IMG_3654Dr. Aruna Manisekaran is a public health intern who will also be working at the Azalea Project. She is currently a Master in Public Health candidate at the University of North Florida (UNF) in Jacksonville. She graduated with first class honors for her undergraduate studies with a Bachelors in Dental Surgery. She also works for the Graduate School at UNF. During her term as an intern for the Azalea Project, Dr. Aruna hopes to expand her horizon as a public health student, learn about working as a public health professional and how to apply her knowledge gained as an MPH student.  In her free time, she likes to think of ways to help those in need and begin her initiative to collect toiletries, socks, and condoms to be distributed to the homeless of Jacksonville. When Dr. Aruna is not working she enjoys activities such as photography, arts and crafts, singing, reading books, and cooking. She is a well-rounded individual who lives with passion, dedication, and grace.

Samantha Williams is a current Master of Public Health (MPH) student at the University of North Florida. SheIMG_3646 earned her Bachelors of Science in Biology as well as a Bachelors of Arts in Sociology. She is currently interning with the Fatherhood P.R. I.D.E Initiative, with the goal of promoting the Fatherhood program, increasing recruitment of new fathers to the program, as well as recruit community partnerships through community and internal outreach. As an intern, she will also be facilitating job skills classes and helping with special events such as the 2nd Annual Barbeque Competition on June 17th. After recently giving birth to a beautiful baby girl, she became increasing interested in improving the health outcomes and lives of babies through the Healthy Start Program, specifically through the Fatherhood P.R.I.D.E. Initiative. She is excited about working with the Northeast Florida Healthy Start Coalition and hopes to make a difference in the lives of the men that she will help, as well as their families.

For more information about the Volunteer Program, contact Jennifer Larramore