On Dec. 21, 1992, the Louisiana Secretary of State recognized the incorporation of the Louisiana Child Caring Foundation — the entity that eventually became the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation.
In recognition of our 25th anniversary, we’re catching up with grantees, starting with our 23 classes of Angel Award honorees.
Carlos Naranjo devoted his life to helping children and families. While a case manager, he helped design the New Orleans Children’s Health Project’s Hispanic Outreach Initiative.
The program provides high-quality medical, case management and mental health visits to Spanish-speaking children.
Naranjo started working on the program after he started noticing an increase in the number of children and parents that spoke Spanish as their primary language. It was clear they were refugees fleeing from violence.
As a Cuban refugee himself, who came when he was a child, he understood the struggle of coming to a new country where you don’t know the language.
He helped patients schedule appointments, check-in, coordinate care and get follow-up appoints. He was a source of support for them. He went to families’ homes to deliver food, toys, school supplies and other donations. Naranjo handled more than 800 case management visits each year, linking children and families to medical specialty care, social and community services.
The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation chose Naranjo as one of the 2013 Angels. The Angel Award grant allowed the hospital to help more patients by hiring a second full-time bilingual case manager.
The new case manager, Miguel Alonso, trained with Naranjo a full year and had him as a mentor.
Naranjo was so passionate about helping children and their families that he would always go above and beyond, said Alonso, and he has done the same for his patients.
Naranjo passed away in September 2016, but his work and dedication are still remembered by those he worked with and served.