Sandra Wells is a longtime advocate and activist in her community. While her job title is Community Health Worker, she can also be found working as a translator and interpreter for Palauan language, a COFA health insurance project coordinator and, since the start of the pandemic, a COVID-19 contact tracer and wraparound services provider. Sandra, or Sandi as colleagues call her, is an inspiration to her community and the recipient of the 2020 Hunger Hero Award.
“It’s important for me to be an advocate because I believe each and every one of us just needs a little help to get on our own two feet,” says Sandi.
Sandi has spent her career focusing on the needs of the Pacifc Islander community in Portland. As a Palauan herself, the community identifies her as someone they can relate to and someone who understands the challenges they have to overcome.
“Auntie Sandi is a huge supporter of mentoring and leadership development because we need leaders who look like us, who know what it’s like to be from an Island very far away,” says Virginia Luka, Program Specialist Senior for the Pacific Islander Community with the Multnomah County Health Department. “I think it’s absolutely critical to have a person like Auntie Sandi.”