“50 Years of Helping People Grow” — Kaiser Permanente’s 2017 Rose Parade® Float Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the Watts Counseling and Learning Center

PASADENA, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#kaiserpermanenteKaiser
will kick-off the 50th anniversary celebration of its Watts
Counseling and Learning Center
(WCLC) with a float entitled, “50
Years of Helping People Grow.” Since 1967, the WCLC has been an anchor
of the community that helps people grow by providing educational
services and resources, community outreach and mental health care to
nearly 2,000 people of all ages each year. Kaiser Permanente Health Plan
membership is not required to participate in the services offered at the

“We are thrilled to be celebrating the Kaiser Permanente Watts
Counseling and Learning Center’s golden anniversary,” said Julie
, president, Kaiser Permanente Southern California
Region. “An essential element of Kaiser Permanente’s work for over 70
years has been to improve the total health of our members and the
communities we serve.” She added, “We look forward to continuing our
deep commitment to helping people grow and thrive in Watts and the
surrounding communities.”

The WCLC has become a force in helping to transform and improve the
community by working with and building alliances with numerous partners
and programs and with the people who live, work, learn and play in
Watts. Examples of some of the services and programs the WCLC provides

  • Individual, family, marital, parent/child, and group therapy in
    English and Spanish, and specialized support for children experiencing
    life threatening illnesses within their families.
  • Individual or small group educational therapy for children with
    learning difficulties.
  • A full day, early childhood education program that develops
    school-readiness skills and motivates preschool children to enjoy
  • Unique outreach programs to help students of all ages achieve academic
    and personal success, including homework assistance, SAT/ACT
    preparation classes, and personal development.
  • A Farmers Market, in partnership with other community agencies, to
    provide local families with access to fresh fruits and vegetables.

Additionally, in honor of the Center’s founder, Bill Coggins, MSW, LCSW,
the WCLC also annually awards the Community
in his name to selected college-bound high school
seniors in recognition of their extraordinary community leadership and

“Over the years we have remained true to our motto of ‘Helping People
Grow’ and this year’s Rose Parade theme, ‘Echoes of Success’, couldn’t
be more evocative of the Center’s accomplishments,” said Joanne A.
Robinson, MEd, director, Kaiser Permanente WCLC. Joanne will be riding
on the float and notes: “This idea that improving the health of our
community requires more than health care services has been a guiding
principle that has shaped our programs, allowed us to expand our
services, and kept us passionate as each day we work toward meeting the
evolving needs of the Watts community.”

The float features iconic landmarks in the community, including the
street signs where the WCLC is located on the corner of Success Avenue
and 103rd Street. The world famous Watts Towers are portrayed on
the float, not only as an enduring symbol of this vibrant community, but
as a representation of an art environment constructed by a single,
self-taught artist: Simon Rodia. In fact, the Watts Towers Arts Center
is located on the grounds of the Watts Towers, and classes are conducted
for both teachers and students in painting, sculpture, photography,
music, dance, and other multi-media arts. For decades, the Towers have
been the focus of cultural and artistic movements addressing issues of
social and economic justice. Today, the Watts Towers serve as a symbol
of pride, creativity, and initiative for the local communities and

Riding on the float this year will be 11 individuals who are current or
former WCLC clients and employees. They will be joined by community
members from Watts, Oregon and Washington D.C., representing other local
community programs such as the Watts
Towers Arts Center
, East
Side Riders Bike Club
, and national programs such as Safe
Routes to School
and the Alliance
for a Healthier Generation

“50 Years of Helping People Grow” marks Kaiser Permanente’s 12th
Rose Parade appearance. Designed and built once again by Fiesta Parade
Floats, all of Kaiser Permanente’s past float entries have received an
award, including the Grand Marshal’s Trophy for excellence in creative
concept and design (2016); Judge’s Special Trophy for the most
spectacular in showmanship and dramatic impact (2015); Theme Trophy for
excellence in presenting the parade theme (2013); Lathrop K. Leishman
Trophy for the most beautiful float entry from a non-commercial sponsor
(2012, 2014); Director’s Trophy for most artistic merit in design and
floral presentation (2011, 2008, 2006); Extraordinaire Trophy for the
“most spectacular” float longer than 55 feet (2010); Tournament Special
Trophy for exceptional merit in multiple classifications (2009); and
President’s Trophy for most effective floral use and presentation (2007).

For additional information about the 2017 Rose Parade and the WCLC
visit: community.kp.org/watts,
Permanente Rose Parade Float
on Facebook, the Tournament
of Roses
 website, and other social media networks using the
hashtags: #kpwatts50 #kptogether.

About Kaiser Permanente Southern California

Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health
care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care
providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, our mission
is to provide high quality, affordable health care services to improve
the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently
serve more than 4.2 million members in Southern California. Care for
members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by
their personal physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our
expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by
industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion,
disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class
chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care
innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of
community health. For more information follow us on twitter; @KPSCALNews
or go to: http://share.kp.org/scal.


Kaiser Permanente
Southern California Region
Elena Aguilar
Office: 626-405-5537
Mobile: 626-372-3359
Office: 626-405-2652
Cell: 310-710-8479