The Kaiser Permanente Community Fund at Northwest Health Foundation awards more than $1.6 Million to improve health
PORTLAND, Ore.— The Kaiser Permanente Community Fund (KPCF) has awarded more than $1.6 million in grant funds to 12 organizations that improve health in Oregon and Southwest Washington. Awarded annually, these grants address the “upstream” or underlying factors that impact community health.
For four years, the fund has focused on three specific social determinants of health: early life and childhood development, educational attainment and economic opportunity. These focus areas were selected to build on community momentum and their potential for long-term impact.
“For too many of us, conditions where we’re born, learn and live limit our choices and our opportunity to be healthy,” said Nichole June Maher, president of Northwest Health Foundation. “The Kaiser Permanente Community Fund supports organizations tackling these conditions in innovative ways that are driven by the very communities they seek to impact. We’re honored to support exactly this kind of work.” Each project selected for a KPCF grant seeks to make measurable improvements in health for individuals and families, while also improving the long-term health of communities. Projects include supporting culturally and linguistically specific Community Education Worker programs, engaging youth around transit justice, building capacity to re-open an alternative school for high-risk Latino youth, preparing Native children for kindergarten and more. One organization, Partnership for Safety and Justice (PSJ), is using their KPCF grant to work on decreasing incarceration and combatting the affects of parental incarceration on children. “Tough on crime policies are tough on children, especially black and brown children whose parents are disproportionately sentenced to prison terms and removed from their kid’s lives,” said Executive Director of PSJ Andy Ko. “This KPCF grant will allow PSJ to contribute to reducing the harm parental incarceration has on children and families through a communications campaign, targeted public education, public opinion research, coalition building and direct policy advocacy.”
The Kaiser Permanente Community Fund at Northwest Health Foundation is a twelve-year, sunset fund with a mission to improve the health of communities throughout the Kaiser Permanente Northwest region. The Fund specifically focuses on addressing the “upstream” factors that create or inhibit community health, also known as the social determinants of health. The fund, ending in 2016, has invested $32 million into our communities. More information about the fund, and the projects listed here, can be found at northwesthealth.org/kpcf.
About Northwest Health Foundation
The mission of Northwest Health Foundation is to advance, support and promote the health of the people in Oregon and Southwest Washington. By providing grants to initiatives, forming partnerships with health and community leaders, and advocating for policy change, we are furthering our vision of giving every person the opportunity to lead a healthy life. More information can be found at www.northwesthealth.org.
About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and nonprofit health plans. Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente has a mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve more than 10 million members in eight states and the District of Columbia, including more than 520,000 medical and 240,000 dental members in Oregon and Southwest Washington. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal physicians, dentists, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical and dental teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health. For more information, go to: kp.org/share.