Sandra Bodenhamer is the Director of RISE Community Health Centre (CHC). She strives to stay true to the values of RISE (Resilient Integrative Socially just and Equitable) in life and in work. Sandra has a clinical background as a registered dietitian, with a special interest in evaluation and community engagement. Her first experience in community health was as a volunteer dietitian at a non-profit society in Belize in 2005. Between 2006-2013, she entered the world of CHCs as a primary care dietitian and a coordinator for health promotion programs at Vancouver Native Health Society. After pausing to complete her Masters of Public Health, she worked as the coordinator of Vancouver Coastal Health’s Healthiest Babies Possible program for pregnant and new parents from 2016-2019.
In 2019, Sandra couldn’t resist the opportunity to return to the non-profit sector to work with Collingwood Neighbourhood House to develop a new CHC in her community. Sandra has experienced tremendous learning since she first became involved in the planning stages, through to opening and early implementation of RISE Community Health Centre.
Her journey from a front-line clinical staff, to the Director of a new CHC, working in both the health authority and non-profits, and working with a variety of populations facing challenging life circumstances has given Sandra a unique and diverse perspective. She is a member of the BC Association of Community Health Centre’s Board of Directors, where she continues to advocate for holistic community care, funding sustainability supported by a concrete evaluation strategy, and to highlight the role of allied health providers in CHCs.