EDRC Representative Jennifer L. Medina reviews the 2017 Boston Children’s Hospital Female Athlete Conference (FAC)

EDRC Representative Jennifer L. Medina, PCCI

As a thankful representative of the EDRC last month (June) I attended the 2017 Boston Children’s Hospital Female Athlete Conference (FAC) at Babson, College in Wellesley, MA. Since 1972’s passage of Title IX, the number of girls involved in competitive sports has dramatically increased thereby demanding more research be done on female athletes. With passion, foresight and awareness of the need for such research, funding and public awareness, Dr. Kate Ackerman, Sports Medicine physician at Boston Children’s Hospital and Director of the Female Athlete Program and Dawn Hynes, founder of Hynes Recovery Services together co-founded Boston Children’s Hospital FAC where proceeds from the conference go towards funding research on female athletes. The Boston Children’s Hospital FAC further explain the inspiration, goal and purpose on their website:

“In the last 40 years, the number of girls competing in high school sports increased from 295,000 to nearly 3.2 million with more women playing collegiate sports than ever before. As girls and young women become more empowered through sports, it is important to advance research on how sex and gender differences affect their performance and overall sports experience.  With research advancement in mind, the Female Athlete Conference, the only conference of its kind in the U.S., centers on the specific health issues that make female athletes unique. Experts in sports medicine, sports psychology, sports science, nutrition and sports culture will present strategies to prevent and treat clinical issues and injuries that can limit a female athlete’s performance.” https://bostonchildrens.cloud-cme.com/Aph.aspx?P=1&EID=333

As a former college athlete, coach and current therapist, walking around meeting and speaking with conference presenters the evening before at a special dinner hosted by conference director and co-founder, Dr. Kate Ackerman, I said to myself, “I think I’ve found my tribe.” After seeing Dr. Jennifer L. Gaudiani deliver a powerful and informative opening presentation on the first day of the conference about medical complications concerning malnutrition and eating disorders generally speaking and athletes in particular, followed by attending a myriad of other important topics being presented about the research being done on issues specific to female athletes regarding race, gender politics, and performance, it’s safe to say I knew I found my tribe.

Filled with gratitude, excitement and a deeper appreciation for the new information and insight I gained over the last three days, my trip was made complete when I was able to meet the amazing Dawn Hynes where I shared my appreciation for the wonderful conference and thanked her for her hard work and steadfast commitment to treating and spreading awareness of eating disorders. Last but certainly not least, I could thank Dawn for her part in making this trip possible in the first place along with Janice and the EDRC who were proud sponsors of the event.

Written by: Jennifer L. Medina, PCCI

EDRC Receives SCCBHB Agency Hero Award

From left to right: Toni Tullys, Director of County Behavioral Services, EDRC founder Janice Bremis, and volunteer Max Sala

On 4 May 2017, The Santa Clara County Behavioral Health Board (SCCBHB) honored Silicon Valley’s Eating Disorder Resource Center (EDRC) with the AGENCY HERO award, a part of the Community Heroes Award Ceremony. These honors are given to community agencies and members who have made an extraordinary difference in the lives of people with behavioral health illness.

Toni Tullys, Director of County Behavioral Services, and Gary Miles, Ph.D., Board President, presented the award to Founder Janice Bremis and volunteer Max Sala, recognizing the EDRC’s outstanding service and commitment to increasing research efforts, professional development, treatment access, and public awareness on eating disorders. The EDRC’s mission is inspired by Ms. Bremis’s dedication to end suffering for individuals by promoting access to quality care. We provide families and local communities resources for prevention and treatment and offer multiple support groups across the Bay Area.

Rock The Boat

This month we feature the recovery story of Kristy, a collegiate athlete who learned that the eating disorder was keeping her life at bay. And while recovery isn’t always smooth sailing, she was able to cast off from the pattern of self-destruction and chart a course to a happier tomorrow.

While the rest of my boat loudly cheered and gave each other sweaty hugs, I found myself running to the stuffy, foul Porta-Potty to do what had become second nature at this point. You just won Pac-12s, I thought to myself as I was simultaneously trying to throw up without breathing in any of the Porta-Potty smells, what the hell is wrong with you? This is a question that both my parents and I would repeatedly ask a couple months out, but at that time, I was so deep into my eating disorder/cognitive disorder that I couldn’t be bothered thinking it through. So, instead, I did what I did best which was thoroughly wash my hands and run back to my teammates with a huge smile on my face and resume my position as the positive, bubbly leader everyone knew me to be. No more throwing up until after NCAAs, I promised myself. I tried to believe that I independently had full control and power over the mental illness that was wreaking havoc on my body but deep down I knew better. For once in my life, I couldn’t out-stubborn or out-work this problem.

Published on 5.26.17 as part of Cielo House’s #RecoveryRockstar campaign
Written by: EDRC volunteer Kristy Wentzel

Eating Disorders: South Bay Students Win Body-Image Essay Contest

Six South Bay students have been named winners in the Eating Disorders Resource Center’s eighth annual Every Body’s Beautiful writing contest.

In the high school division, Sean-Yuei Tseng and Vivian Le, both seniors at Piedmont Hills High, placed first and second respectively and Ayushi Ray, a sophomore at Cupertino, placed third.

In the middle-school division, Carina Chiu, an eighth-grader at University Preparatory Academy charter school in San Jose placed first; and Elisia Macias, a seventh-grader at Brownell Middle School in Gilroy placed second. The third-place winner chose to remain anonymous.

Published on The Mercury News website on 4.12.17
Written by: Sharon Noguchi

EDRC Press Release (3/30/17) – EDRC Announces Winners of 2017 Every Body’s Beautiful Writing Contest with a Record Breaking Number of Participants!

From the 3.30.17 press release:

EDRC Announces Winners of 2017 Every Body’s Beautiful Writing Contest with a Record Breaking Number of Participants!

Eating Disorders Resource Center (EDRC) is pleased to announce the student winners of its eighth annual Every Body’s Beautiful Writing Contest. The contest gives middle and high school students the opportunity to address self-love, self-acceptance, and the media’s effect on body image. A local high school videography class will make videos of the first-place winning entries. Through this, we are involving more young people in the topic and the creative process, as well as bringing the message into a medium more likely to be widely used and shared by today’s youth.

This year we received over 200 student entries from 35 different middle and high schools. Our esteemed participants shared what beauty means to them and how the media affects their body image. Judges included Peter Tavernise, Cisco Foundation; Munira Nasser Webb, Cisco; Allison Bennett, Peachjar; Matthew Wilson, Bay Area News Group; Louise Persson, AAUW Strong Girl’s Conference; and Laurie Kelm, FASS Services.

First, second and third place winners for each category will receive cash prizes of $300, $200, and $100, respectively in the next month. Special thanks to this year’s sponsors; Palo Alto Medical Foundation and the Santa Clara County Library District.

2nd Place: Vivian Le, Grade 12, Piedmont Hills High School
3rd Place: Ayushi Ray, Grade 10, Cupertino High School

2nd Place: Elisia Macias, Grade 7, Brownell Middle School
3rd Place: Anonymous, Grade 8, Venture Academy

Each time that she looks at herself today,
she vows to find something nice to say.
She won’t break herself down any longer
or make the cruel dragon any stronger.
She’s waited too long for a prince to swoop in,
not realizing that true love comes from within.
Now, she’ll rewrite the fairytales on her shelf
so the princess can finally save herself.
– Excerpt from our first place High School Winner, Sean-Yuei Tseng

Irvington High School Volunteers Represent EDRC at 2017 Evergreen Valley College (EVC) Strong Women Leadership Conference

Volunteers Amanda Tran (L) and Kyra Lorenzo (R) pose in front of the EDRC conference booth.

On March 18, three volunteers from Irvington High School represented EDRC in the 2017 Evergreen Valley College Strong Women Leadership Conference. Presented by the San Jose chapter of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) and Evergreen Valley College Women and Gender Studies Department, the event included a resource fair, raffle contest, and a variety of workshops on campus sexual assault, healthy relationships, and positive body image.

View photos of the conference and volunteer Katherine Chan’s reflection on the event here.

Irvington High School Volunteers Represent EDRC at 2017 Evergreen Valley College (EVC) Strong Women Leadership Conference

On March 18, three volunteers from Irvington High School represented EDRC at the 2017 Evergreen Valley College Strong Women Leadership Conference. Presented by the San Jose chapter of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) and Evergreen Valley College Women and Gender Studies Department, the event included a resource fair, raffle contest, and a variety of workshops on campus sexual assault, healthy relationships, and positive body image.

Below is Katherine Chen’s reflection on the event:

“The Strong Women Conference was such a wonderful experience. Seeing all the people there who cared so much about the empowerment of women really inspired me. The guest speakers were so influential and powerful, and it was an honor getting to hear them speak about their hardships and successes.”

“There were many workshops to choose from, and we attended ‘When Women Lead, Women Win!’ by Chandra Brooks and ‘A Heavy Price: The Effect of Weight Stigma’ by Dr. Jen Henretty and Jamie Atkins. Both of these left me with a lasting impact. Chandra Brooks talked about how women can and should strive for the best instead of settling for ‘safe’ positions, since that is how women often act. Most success is primarily the result of hard work. People, especially women, work hard to get to where they are, but often times, people only see the final result and call it luck. In the second workshop, the presenters stressed the importance of how health is not defined by weight, and how many aspects of modern society and culture stigmatize weight.”

“Overall, this was a very rewarding experience and it left me with a very powerful impression of how women can also reach the top if they go for it, even if society often holds women back from doing so.”

View Katherine’s photos of the event below.

Volunteers Katherine Chen (L) and Amanda Tran (R) pose with the EDRC conference booth. 

Volunteers Amanda Tran (L) and Kyra Lorenzo (R) pose with the EDRC conference booth.

The EDRC conference booth. Volunteers created an informational board with eating disorder facts and resources. The booth also served as a safe space for visitors to share their thoughts about eating disorders.

One of the workshops attended by EDRC volunteers. 

EDRC Executive Director Janice Bremis Announced as Eating Disorder Recovery Support (EDRS) 2017 Inaugural Hall of Fame Honoree

From the EDRS website:

“We are excited to announce our 2017 Inaugural Hall of Fame Honorees. We hope you join us in celebrating and honoring their hard work, dedication and outstanding contribution to the eating disorder field at our upcoming Benefit Dinner on Friday, February 3, 2017 in San Rafael, CA.”

“~ Advocacy: Janice Bremis, B.A. ~

Janice Bremis is a founding member of the Eating Disorders Resource Center. This is a personal mission for Bremis, who was diagnosed with an eating disorder in 1975. Because she suffered from this illness, she is aware of the stigma that surrounds eating disorders, as well as the need for education and support services. She has worked throughout her career to raise awareness among both healthcare professionals and the general public about the seriousness of eating disorders. The Eating Disorders Resource Center is the first and one of the only locally based nonprofit organizations focused on eating disorders in Silicon Valley. Bremis relies heavily on her force of volunteers, who inspires her on a daily basis.

Janice considers herself a health advocate and activist, especially in the area of mental health. She works with dedicated volunteers to raise awareness, promote recovery, and advocate for equitable insurance coverage for eating disorders. She has made EDRC the “go-to” place for the South Baycommunity for those seeking treatment and information. She works closely with local eating disorder experts and non-profits serving those with mental illness to assure parity of health and support services.”

To learn more about the 2017 EDRS Benefit Dinner and the Inaugural Hall of Fame nominees, click here.

EDRC Executive Director Janice Bremis Announced as Eating Disorder Recovery Support (EDRS) 2017 Inaugural Hall of Fame Honoree

From the EDRS website:

“We are excited to announce our 2017 Inaugural Hall of Fame Honorees. We hope you join us in celebrating and honoring their hard work, dedication and outstanding contribution to the eating disorder field at our upcoming Benefit Dinner on Friday, February 3, 2017 in San Rafael, CA.”

“~ Advocacy: Janice Bremis, B.A. ~

Janice Bremis is a founding member of the Eating Disorders Resource Center. This is a personal mission for Bremis, who was diagnosed with an eating disorder in 1975. Because she suffered from this illness, she is aware of the stigma that surrounds eating disorders, as well as the need for education and support services. She has worked throughout her career to raise awareness among both healthcare professionals and the general public about the seriousness of eating disorders. The Eating Disorders Resource Center is the first and one of the only locally based nonprofit organizations focused on eating disorders in Silicon Valley. Bremis relies heavily on her force of volunteers, who inspires her on a daily basis.

Janice considers herself a health advocate and activist, especially in the area of mental health. She works with dedicated volunteers to raise awareness, promote recovery, and advocate for equitable insurance coverage for eating disorders. She has made EDRC the “go-to” place for the South Baycommunity for those seeking treatment and information. She works closely with local eating disorder experts and non-profits serving those with mental illness to assure parity of health and support services.”

To learn more about the 2017 EDRS Benefit Dinner and the Inaugural Hall of Fame nominees, click here.

VieTV Interview – A Way Out

Aired on: VieTV SFO (Channel 238 on Comcast Xfinity) as “A Way Out” feature

Moderated by: Vivian Do

Interview with Kira Olson, EDRC volunteer

To view the full interview, click on the image below.

Above: Kira Olson, EDRC volunteer interviewed on Vietv on eating disorders in Asian communities and on EDRC’s activity in the community