In the past six years, Avenal residents have only increased their petitions for a facility citing the urgent need to improve their health factors. In 2020, Kings County ranked 55 out of 58 California counties in health factors – defined as health behaviors, clinical care, the physical environment and social and economic factors – which demonstrates that our residents generally have fewer opportunities to improve their health outcomes than those in other counties. Over 24% of adults in this area have a BMI greater than 30 (compared to 22.5% statewide), and 33% of the Medicare population here has diabetes (compared to 25.3% statewide). This has only been exacerbated with the spread of COVID-19, which has disproportionally affected poorer communities, those with existing chronic diseases and the Hispanic and Latino population.
In 2016, the City of Avenal embarked on a three-phase project to launch the Avenal Community Center, a 34,000 square-foot facility that will include a basketball court, indoor soccer field, fitness room, kitchen learning space, banquet hall and office spaces for local sports groups. The first phase of this project was funded in 2016 through a $2.4 million Community Development Block Grant for design and construction.
Phase I was completed in December of 2020, and currently, the City is seeking funding to complete the following two phases with an expected completion date of Fall 2021.
Envisioning the Project on 23 Acres of Vacant Land