We Stand with Orlando and Against Gun Violence
Earlier this month we witnessed another mass shooting, the largest in our nation’s recent history. The heartbreaking events in Orlando follow countless acts of senseless gun violence that have happened across our country. Each leaves us outraged, angry and sad. The victims of these types of shootings are innocent, and in Orlando the lives lost are those of a LGBTQ community that has historically experienced discrimination.
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Responsive Grants Program awards go to 36 organizations
This month we awarded 36 grants totaling $500,000 through the Responsive Grants Program. The grants up to $15,000 will support programs that improve health and well-being in our 26-county funding region. Forty-four percent of the funding was awarded to projects serving exclusively in rural areas.
“Through the Responsive Grants Program, nonprofits can accelerate their efforts on behalf of children, youth, isolated seniors, homeless individuals and families in need,” said Sierra Health Foundation President and CEO Chet P. Hewitt. “In addition to direct services, this program funds activities that empower people to bring about systems and policy changes needed to achieve and sustain health equity.”
Since launching the Responsive Grants Program in 2008, we have awarded 348 grants totaling approximately $7 million. Grants have supported a diverse range of activities that strengthen communities, reduce health disparities and improve health and well-being. This year is no different, with projects supporting youth mentoring, prisoner re-entry, refugee integration, tribal elder support and other important services.
Learn more and see the grant list with descriptions on the Responsive Grants Program web page.
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Innovations for Children Awards honor local health care professionals
At our inaugural Innovations for Children Awards on June 2, we were pleased to honor Steering Committee on Reduction of African American Child Deaths members Dr. Ethan Cutts of Kaiser Permanente and Ms. Diane Galati of Dignity Health for their pioneering work to ensure that infants and their families have a healthy start in life, through infant sleep assessment education.
In Sacramento County for the past 20 years, African American children died at two times the rate of other children. According to the Child Abuse Prevention Center, infant deaths make up 50 percent of those mortalities.
“These are tragedies that do not need to happen, and thanks to Dr. Cutts’ and Ms. Galati’s tireless leadership, families are educated on safe sleep practices,” said Chet P. Hewitt, President and CEO of Sierra Health Foundation and Co-Chair of the Steering Committee on Reduction of African American Child Deaths. “If the family does not have a crib, one is provided to them to ensure their baby’s safety.”
See the Infant Sleep Assessment video.
Learn more about the work to reduce African American child deaths on the Steering Committee web page.
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Respite Partnership Collaborative sunsets
The Respite Partnership Collaborative was launched in 2012 with time-limited funding from the Sacramento County Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) Innovation funds. The project is now sunsetting. Through four years, 11 programs were funded, representing an expansion of the county mental health delivery system, and providing alternatives to receiving care in hospital emergency departments for more than 7,000 Sacramentans.
The Respite Partnership Collaborative was established to test a public-private partnership model to develop and support a network of mental health respite programs. A total of 47 individuals served as Respite Partnership Collaborative members over the course of the project’s four years.
Sierra Health Foundation: Center for Health Program Management was approved by the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors in 2011 to serve as the administrative entity for the Respite Partnership Collaborative Project. The Center for Health Program Management managed the public-private partnership with the County of Sacramento Division of Behavioral Health Services, coordinated community engagement and oversaw grantmaking of $5.25 million in funding awards for mental health respite programs. See the list of grantees.
This network of mental health respite care will be sustained with Sacramento County Mental Health Services Act funding for the next three years, ensuring that community-based, culturally responsive respite will remain an option for individuals at risk of or in a mental health crisis.
Learn more on the Respite Partnership Collaborative web page.
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Sierra Health Foundation to support Oak Park Promise Neighborhood
We are pleased to announce our support for the Oak Park Promise Neighborhood effort, a partnership of the City of Sacramento, the Oak Park community and UC Davis. The partners are working collectively to transform 50 city blocks into a place where every resident can live, learn, work and be healthy.
Oak Park is a community with rich history, but also great need. In the last 20 years, it has been one of the most under-resourced communities in the city. The current poverty rate is 34% and only 18% of third-graders read at grade level. The Oak Park Promise Neighborhood provides the opportunity to build on Oak Park’s history and the efforts of community partners to realize the vision of an ethnically and socially diverse community in which all residents and families are thriving. This community transformation effort will focus on education, health, employment and housing.
Sierra Health Foundation Program Officer Myel Jenkins will provide support to the initiative as the Oak Park Promise Neighborhood Project Manager. Myel will begin her new role on July 5 and will be located in Oak Park.
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Community launches program to reduce African American child deaths and announces partners
On June 23, the Steering Committee on Reduction of African American Child Deaths (RAACD) officially launched a countywide initiative to reduce the number of Sacramento County’s African American child deaths. During this community launch, key partners called Community Incubator Leads – community-based organizations that provide social services to local residents within each of the focus neighborhoods – were announced and each presented on services and resources they provide and their plans to further implement the efforts of the Steering Committee. The Community Incubator Leads include:
Arden Arcade: Mutual Assistance Network - Arden Arcade Community Center
Fruitridge/Stockton Boulevard: Sacramento Building Healthy Communities HUB
North Sacramento/Del Paso Heights: Roberts Family Development Center
North Highlands/Foothill Farms: Liberty Towers Church of the Nazarene
Valley Hi: South Sacramento Christian Center
Oak Park: To be determined in July.
Meadowview: To be determined in August.
Also announced at the launch were the community communications consultants, The Observer Media Group, the evaluation consultant, LPC Associates, Inc., and the members of the Community Leadership Roundtable who will serve as community liaisons to the Steering Committee.
In Sacramento County for the past 20 years, African American children died at two times the rate of other children. In 2013, following the Blue Ribbon Commission report, the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors established the Steering Committee on RAACD, a community-driven body, to reduce deaths among African American children by 10 percent to 20 percent by 2020. Over the last two years, the Steering Committee has worked to create a strategic plan
and an implementation plan, and has successfully secured $8.1 million over the next five years from the County and City of Sacramento for this work. This funding is in addition to the commitments made by the County’s First 5 Commission and its child welfare and probation departments. The Steering Committee is managed by the Center for Health Program Management.
Learn more on the Steering Committee on RAACD web page.
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Nonprofits receive Leadership Development for Racial Equity grants
The Leadership Development for Racial Equity Program supports advocacy-related capacity building and leadership development activities for youth-focused nonprofit organizations led by people of color serving in Northern California and the San Joaquin Valley.
With funding from Sierra Health Foundation and The California Endowment, 13 nonprofits were awarded nearly $130,000 to strengthen capacity of their organizations to address racial equity through policy and system change.
As one of the most diverse states in the nation, California depends significantly on the success of the communities of color that together comprise a majority of its population. Yet many African Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, Native Americans and other Californians face systemic barriers to leading healthy lives. These barriers include access to quality education, safe neighborhoods, clean environments and other resources.
“We are committed to building the capacity of organizations working to tackle critical and socially complex issues that disproportionally impact youth of color,” said Sierra Health Foundation President and CEO Chet P. Hewitt. “Through the Leadership Development for Racial Equity Program, together with our local funded partners/grantees, we are removing the very obstacles that prohibit young people from realizing their full potential.”
Learn more and see the grantee list on the Leadership Development for Racial Equity web page.
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