Exploring the Packard Foundation’s U.S. Reproductive Health Initiative

The Packard Foundation has a long history of funding efforts that protect, regain, and expand access to abortion and contraception and funding innovations to expand access to these services as part of its U.S. Reproductive Health initiative. To explore the foundation’s current work, specifically at the state level, Grantmakers In Health’s Miranda Wesley spoke with the Packard Foundation’s U.S. Reproductive Health Director, Elizabeth Arndorfer.

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A New Philanthropic Approach to Supporting the Health and Capacity of Rural Communities

To understand health and wellness in rural America, it has been suggested that you need to find a trusted intermediary inside the region that is walking hand-in-hand with the community. Aspen Institute’s Community Strategies Group describes this type of intermediary as a Rural Development Hub. Rural Development Hubs focus on advancing an asset-based, wealth-building approach to rural community engagement and economic development. This inherently includes increasing the health and wellness of the community and its residents; increasing local ownership of all types of assets from cultural, social, financial to political, attracting external resources and funding; and it always includes low-income, under resourced people and places. Hubs seek to transform regions by treating root causes of multigenerational poverty and disease by shifting the balance of power and developing a stronger power base in the community and with those most impacted by the issues at hand.

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Expanding Youth Mental Health in Philadelphia Schools

Youth in the United States are in crisis. Rates of depression and anxiety in children have been on the rise, the result of factors like social media, pandemic related issues like isolation, and trauma from gun violence and poverty. Between 2016 and 2020, diagnoses of depression in youth ages 3-17 increased by nearly 30 percent and were higher for children of color and LGBTQ children according to a 2022 study by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

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‘Digging In’ to Create a Healthy Agriculture System

Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems Funders (SAFSF), a Grantmakers In Health (GIH) Philanthropy Support Partner, recently released their first documentary film, Digging In, in partnership with Masika Henson, Nathan.works, and Vatheuer Family Foundation. The documentary aims to help funders understand how land access, consolidation, and climate change affect U.S. agriculture, which are all factors that impact health and equity. To learn more about the creation and inspiration behind the film, GIH conducted the following Q&A with SAFSF’s Executive Director Clare Fox.

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How Philanthropy Can Support Los Angeles Homeless Providers Facing Challenges Accessing California Housing Services

In 2022, Cedars-Sinai, HealthNet, and the California Community Foundation launched a philanthropic partnership to support a learning collaborative for 11 providers that serve the unhoused to receive capacity building, policy guidance, and other assistance to take advantage of the new CalAIM Community Supports (CS) housing services. Nonprofit Finance Fund engaged providers and provided capacity building and support to each organization to explore CalAIM and plan for their potential engagement in the Medi-Cal service model. Corporation for Supportive Housing is working on an advocacy agenda with the provider cohort as they experienced challenges and barriers during the process. The goal was for their learnings to inform current and future policy and advocacy discussions about the opportunities, challenges, and needs related to Community Supports to promote the highest quality of care for individuals and families who are at risk of becoming unhoused or who are already unhoused.

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Cross-Sector Collaboration to Expand Early Access to Whole-Person, Supportive Cancer Care

For many common cancers, the rates of incidence are on the rise. In 2024, first-time new cases of cancer in the United States are expected to reach two million, or almost 5,500 cancer diagnoses a day, with Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities experiencing a higher incidence. Within the health care system, there are multiple challenges to equitable care related to gaps in health insurance, access to care and culturally relevant care models, and discrimination and bias in care and treatment.

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Exploring the Tides Foundation’s Efforts to Support Civic Engagement and Protect Reproductive Health

Funders can play a major role in promoting a healthy democracy, and increasingly, grantmakers like the Tides Foundation are investing in civic engagement. To learn more about Tides’ work in this area, along with their support of ballot initiatives on reproductive health, Grantmakers In Health’s Miranda Wesley spoke with the Tides Foundation’s Program Officer of Civic Engagement and Democracy, Beth Huang.

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Addressing the Heart of Inequity: Tackling Cardiovascular Disease in Underserved Communities

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death globally and in the United States, with a disproportionate impact on underserved communities. To discuss the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation’s focused strategy on addressing these disparities and driving equitable access to cardiology care, Grantmaker In Health’s Miranda Wesley spoke with the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation’s Senior Program Director, Adrienne Gonzalez.

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A New Generation of Researchers: Hearing from Youth Leaders on Their Well-Being

Building upon a previous conversation with Juan Martinez of the Aspen Institute and Cynthia Weaver of The Annie E. Casey Foundation on their collaboration on the Youth and Young Adult Well-Being project, the following Q&A features three paid youth consultants who are leading the research initiative as the Youth and Young Adult Well-Being core team. Each team member represents a different cultural affinity group in the well-being project: Desiree Armas from Latine Bienestar, Niara Frankson from Black Expressions of Well-Being, and Zenetta Zepeda from American Indian/Alaska Native.

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Lessons from the Washington AIDS Partnership: How to Take Big Risks and Move Quickly to Drive Change

The Washington AIDS Partnership, a collaboration of grantmaking organizations with a mission of ending the HIV epidemic in the Greater Washington region, was founded in 1988 with the support of the Ford Foundation and 20 DC-area foundations. The organization’s charge was to make grants to the community as quickly as possible. At that time, Washington, DC had the fifth-highest HIV rate in the country, and the epidemic was out of control. As the city has made great progress reaching goals set in the DC Ends HIV Plan, the Washington AIDS Partnership determined in 2023 that its role in the fight to end the local epidemic was coming to an end. The organization will officially conclude its work in the first quarter of 2024.

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