Andrea on Healthy Retail: CAM Youth Advocate Shares Testimony at Press Conference

yli is My Story

“We’re tired of seeing our neighborhoods bombarded with these products, and advertisements. That is why we are working to promote healthier stores to support our local markets at Youth Leadership Institute. It’s important for us to work together and continue to fight to make our neighborhoods healthier and keep them that way.”
— Andrea, Community Action Model (CAM) advocate

Last Wednesday morning, Andrea was invited by the Healthy Stores for Healthy Communities (HSHC) campaign to speak at a press conference and share research findings about the retail environment in San Francisco. This data shows that 60% of stores sell flavored cigarillos, while only 50% of stores sell fresh fruits and vegetables.


The Healthy Stores for a Healthy Community campaign is a statewide collaborative focused on improving the health of communities across California by partnering with local retailers. Youth and adult leaders from Youth Leadership Institute, Bay Area Community Resources, Vietnamese Youth Development Center, and Bayview Food Guardians worked together to conduct 265 tobacco retail stores across 10 zipcodes in San Francisco.

“Five times more stores in the low-income neighborhoods sell cheap alcohol products compared to wealthier neighborhoods. That means that wealthier neighborhoods have less exposure to the unhealthy products that constantly bombard our communities.”

Andrea is one of 7 Community Action Model (CAM) advocates at YLI. CAM is a group of youth leaders in San Francisco who have developed a policy campaign to reduce unhealthy advertising and showcase community art. Their two-year campaign includes a five-step community capacity building and organizing process to create systemic change and elevate the health of their communities. CAM advocates have engaged residents, stakeholders, and community members across San Francisco to ensure involvement across the city and create sustainable community change.

To hear more from Andrea, check out this video: