Responsive Grants Program awards go to 35 organizations to improve health, promote access and reduce health inequity
We’re pleased to announce the 2018 Responsive Grants Program awards. A total of $500,000 in grants to 35 nonprofit organizations and public agencies will support programs that serve diverse ethnic populations throughout our 26-county funding region. Almost 36 percent of the funding will support projects serving exclusively in rural areas of the region.
Since launching the Responsive Grants Program in 2008, we have awarded 405 grants totaling approximately $7.8 million. This year’s awards focus on health promotion, mental health services, education reform, employment and workforce development, access to health care, positive youth development, homelessness and housing, sustainable communities, community safety, access to healthy foods, environmental justice, immigrant rights and integration, and other community-driven efforts.
Funding decisions were based on the program criteria, geographic representation across the funding region, a minimum 30 percent set-aside for projects serving rural areas, and diversity in types of projects and populations served.
See the grant list with program descriptions on the Responsive Grants Program web page.
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Chet P. Hewitt joins California Influencers series
This election year, The Sacramento Bee and other McClatchy newspapers in California have assembled a panel of 60 influential Californians – including Sierra Health Foundation President and CEO Chet P. Hewitt – to offer their views in a weekly conversation. Learn more and read responses on The Sacramento Bee web site.
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Partner Spotlight: WellSpace Health’s Amador dental program reaches underserved children
Access to health care has long been a challenge in many rural areas throughout California. In Amador County, health services are expanding, thanks to nonprofit health provider WellSpace Health.
Through its community health center in Martell near the city of Jackson, WellSpace Health provides primary care, immediate care and integrated behavioral health care for underserved residents in Amador County and beyond. Seeing a need for dental care for children in the county, WellSpace Health requested a Sierra Health Foundation grant last year to start a pediatric dental practice at the health center. With existing unused exam rooms available, WellSpace Health used the $15,000 grant to purchase mobile dental equipment and X-ray equipment. The practice is open two days a week and is full each day, according to WellSpace Health CEO Jonathan Porteus, and plans are to expand to five days a week. With these services available in the county, families no longer need to go without dental care for their children or travel long distances to access care.
“Once again, the missions of WellSpace Health and Sierra Health Foundation have dovetailed, resulting in the first pediatric oral health services ever to be dedicated to Amador County’s underserved communities,” Porteus said.
WellSpace Health has provided care and support to individuals and families throughout the Sacramento region since 1953, with a focus to offer a full range of quality medical care, dental care for children and adolescents, mental health and behavioral health services to underserved populations. WellSpace Health is a statewide leader in designing and delivering integrated care that treats the whole person, body and mind. Learn more on the WellSpace Health web site.
Photo courtesy of WellSpace Health. Pictured left to right: Dr. Kyung Joo, Receptionist Sonya Bozeman and Yolanda Peterson, RDA.
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MBK Sacramento Youth Fellows present policy recommendations to the community
What do young men from Sacramento have to say about issues impacting boys and men of color? What are their ideas for solutions? On June 27, the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Sacramento Youth Fellows presented their research findings and policy recommendations to the community at the Serna Center (Sacramento City Unified School District Office). They also celebrated their accomplishments as the inaugural cohort of the MBK Sacramento Youth Fellowship Program.
The Youth Fellows presented the following policy recommendations:
1. Increase resources to improve education and mental health supports at school, including mandatory check-ins with counselors and access to mental health professional counselors who understand and care about young men of color.
2. Increase access to positive male role models for young men of color through community events that provide space for mentorship and healing, and the development of a social media app that can connect young men to mentors.
The Youth Fellowship Program engages young men of color ages 16 to 19 to become agents of change in their community. Through guidance from a team of caring adult mentors, Fellows build skills and knowledge to equip them as youth advocates, and work collaboratively with young men from across the region, establishing a brotherhood and a shared culture of support for one another.
We will announce the 2018-2019 Youth Fellowship opportunity soon. Learn more on the MBK Sacramento web page.
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Kings and Queens Rise Basketball League offers youth a safe place to learn and engage
Youth from the eight Black Child Legacy Campaign neighborhoods came together at Encina High School in Sacramento on June 9 for a jamboree to tip off the Kings and Queens Rise Co-Ed Basketball League.
A partnership of the Black Child Legacy Campaign, the Build.Black. Coalition, the Sacramento Kings and Kaiser Permanente, the league seeks to interrupt violence by providing an opportunity for young people to engage in intercommunity sports, while providing a caring and positive environment with community building, sportsmanship and resources for health and safety. Weekly practices provide a fun and safe environment for young athletes to learn fundamental basketball, as well as a variety of topics from mental health to conflict resolution to responsible social media use.
Two co-ed teams represent each of the eight Sacramento neighborhoods. The eight-week season includes weekly tournaments hosted in a different neighborhood each Saturday, and will culminate in a daylong tournament on July 28 at Golden 1 Center.
The Black Child Legacy Campaign is raising visibility and strengthening collective impact efforts of the Steering Committee on Reduction of African American Child Deaths to reduce the number of child mortalities. Learn more.
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New San Joaquin Valley Health Fund video highlights power of collaboration
The Center last month announced more than $975,000 of funding through the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund for 58 nonprofit organizations to support work on policy and systems change to improve health outcomes. This new video features interviews with nonprofit leaders who share their thoughts on how the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund has facilitated collaboration, capacity building and connections among partner organizations, and has helped them increase their visibility in the valley and beyond. See the video series on YouTube.
Since its inception in 2014, the San Joaquin Valley Health Fund has grown into a partnership of 86 nonprofit organizations, along with 12 state and national foundations, that are jointly working to build a greater level of racial and health equity in this important part of the state. Grant commitments to date total $6 million. Learn more.
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Job opportunity: Vice President of Policy and Communications
The Vice President of Policy and Communications is a newly created position that will serve on the combined Sierra Health Foundation and The Center executive team. This person will lead the development and implementation of an expanded communications strategy to deepen the growing policy and advocacy focus of both organizations. The position’s responsibilities will be focused on ensuring effective communications and public relations between external stakeholders and the Foundation and Center team to advance policy goals. For more information about the position and application instructions, visit our Employment Opportunities web page.
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Talk Boldly podcast features Angela Glover Blackwell
Hosted by Sierra Health Foundation and highlighting the authentic voice of community leaders who inspire us, our Talk Boldly podcast series features conversations on the systemic, social and cultural issues impacting our communities, and offers insight from expert guests on how communities can make their own impact.
Our most recent podcast is titled Grounded in Social Justice: 50 Years of Racial Equity Advocacy with Angela Glover Blackwell. The founder and CEO of PolicyLink, Ms. Blackwell speaks with Kaying Hang, Sierra Health Foundation and The Center Vice President of Programs and Partnerships, about centering social change work around racial equity, the importance of advocates educating themselves, and lessons learned from Blackwell’s 50 years of activism.
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The Development Minute: Special Event Giving
We’re pleased to share the most recent episode in The Development Minute, in collaboration with the Association of Fundraising Professionals – California Capital Chapter. This video series shares insights to help nonprofits build organizational and personal capacity to raise funds, recruit board members and donors, and develop relationships with partners and community members.
Special Event Giving features Kara Walker of Placer Land Trust, which focuses on protection and conservation of natural and agricultural land in Placer County. Ms. Walker shares recommendations for turning special event donors, such as for Sacramento’s Big Day of Giving, into year-round supporters.
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Throughout 2018, we’re continuing to highlight the work of our partners through the #PeoplePursuing campaign. We invite you to visit our Facebook and Instagram pages for new inspiring posts!
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