CHANDLER, ARIZ. (March 13, 2023) – Dignity Health Chandler Regional and Mercy Gilbert Medical Centers, along with Dignity Health Arizona General Hospital Mesa recently awarded $422,000 in grant funding to support five community projects led by 15 local, community-based organizations.
Dignity Health's Community Health Improvement Grants program is one example of how the not-for-profit health organization works collaboratively with the communities it serves to fulfil its mission to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable and underserved populations. Funded by small annual percentage contributions from all Dignity Health hospitals, the Community Health Improvement Grants program has awarded $91 million to nearly 3,800 health improvement projects since 1991.
The program awards funds to local organizations that work collaboratively as a team to address identified needs and promote health and well-being services to underserved populations, specifically in priority neighborhoods identified by the program’s tri-annual Community Health Needs Assessment. The following teams, known as Community of Care projects, were awarded funding in the East Valley for 2023.
Led by Aster Aging Inc., AZCEND and Tempe Community Action Agency, the East Valley Senior Home Sharing Program works to prevent homelessness among older adults. Through an intensive assessment and case management approach, the program connects pairs of vulnerable seniors to share homes and expenses while providing each other with companionship. An ongoing array of wrap-around supports will be available, including access to benefits & financial aid, senior center or home delivered meals, transportation, home care, and social services.
Destination Diploma Chandler identifies homeless youth attending Chandler Unified School District (CUSD) high schools and supports students’ efforts to remain in attendance and graduate. Child Crisis of Arizona, Chandler Education Foundation, and Matthew’s Crossing have teamed up for this project which also helps students have a post-secondary plan in place.
The Freedom House is a joint effort between Hope for Addiction, Jesus Cares Ministries, and Gospel Centered Biblical Counseling. Their mission is to provide safe shelter and transition support for at-risk families for up to two years while teaching them to be self-sufficient, productive members of their community with less reliance on state services. Individual care plans are created based on the needs of the family, and services include: housing, career counseling, addiction/trauma informed counseling, financial responsibility education, nutrition and healthy living tools, effective parenting coaching, and personal responsibility and time management support.
Mission of Mercy of AZ, partnered with Arizona Diabetes Foundation and AZCEND for the Improving the Health of Uninsured Patients with Diabetes project. This project serves uninsured and underinsured diabetic patients by providing comprehensive care via regular medical exams, prescription medications, diabetes education, monitoring of the key indicators of diabetes, and increased access to fresh produce.
The Youth Mental Health Collective is run by notMYkid with Inc.Bring Change to Mind, and Laloboy Foundation. The goal of this collective is to reduce mental health crisis and suicide risk among children in Chandler and Gilbert by increasing knowledge, skills, and access to care. The evidenced-based and informed programming includes culturally inclusive prevention that educates youth, creates meaningful opportunities for prosocial involvement, and prepares youth with essential life skills. Children who need additional support also receive peer support and access to counseling services.