Walking into NAHC’s Oakland WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) Office, visitors are now greeted with a vibrant mural that paints a story beyond the beautiful colors and designs. This mural serves as a testament to the strength and beauty of motherhood across diverse Indigenous cultures and the commitment of our WIC team to promote holistic health and nutrition.
This new addition to our office features four women, each in a different stage of motherhood: including pregnancy, cradling an infant, embracing a child, and breastfeeding (the first sacred food). The most notable part of the design is the cultural representation. These women belong to Indigenous communities of North, Central, and South America, a nod to the diverse populations NAHC serves. Their intricate textiles and regalia represent Aztec, Guatemalan, Bolivian, and Native American heritages.
Surrounding the mothers are fruits, vegetables, and herbs, symbolizing our WIC food, nutrition, and breastfeeding educational services. Including the Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program, through which families can get herbs. The team helps educate families about the nutritional properties of herbs and highlights the tradition of many cultures to use herbs in meals.
The artist who created this beautiful mural is Soni Lopez-Chavez. Born in Guanajuato, Mexico, Soni’s journey from her birthplace to San Diego, where she lives now, is filled with resilience and passion. As a first-generation immigrant, her art reflects her Chichimeca heritage and the experiences she has gained over the years. From issues of Indigenous sovereignty, immigration rights, and mental health awareness to LGBTQ+ themes, her art speaks to the struggles and triumphs of marginalized communities.
NAHC and our WIC Department are honored to have Soni Lopez-Chavez’s artwork grace our walls, a daily reminder of the rich cultures we serve and our unwavering commitment to holistic health, nutrition, and uplifting our communities.