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Northeast Ohio 2020 Community Connections Grants

Grants Will Achieve Cavity-Free Kids, Healthy Ohioans, and Safe Elders


The HealthPath Foundation of Ohio (HealthPath) recently awarded $32,000 in grants to four organizations dedicated to improving community health in northeast Ohio. The grants are part of HealthPath’s Community Connections initiative, which awarded 22 grants this year totaling $176,000 to Ohio nonprofit organizations. The grants offer general operating support of $8,000 over two years.

“Improving health takes a combination of system- and community-designed solutions,” said Eric DeWald, president of HealthPath. “Our Community Connections initiative helps lay the groundwork for bringing community partners together to improve the people’s health. We are proud to partner with these exemplary nonprofit organizations to help all Ohioans reach their fullest health potential.”

The 2020 Community Connections initiative focuses on organizations that have strong community engagement strategies and achieve one of HealthPath’s results areas of Cavity-Free Kids to ensure Ohio’s children ages 0–12 have healthy mouths; Healthy Ohioans to ensure residents have access to the services they need to be healthy, including access to care and healthy food; and Age-Friendly Communities to ensure older adults live and participate in communities to their fullest potential, free from abuse, neglect and exploitation.

The 2020 grantees creating Healthy Ohioans include:

Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Central Ohio (serving Carroll & Tuscarawas Counties): Big Brothers Big Sisters of East Central Ohio serves children through their community-based and school-based mentoring programs. Through these programs, a “Little” is matched with a “Big” to serve as a mentor and role-model, as well as help counsel and provide support on topics such as self-esteem, healthy relationships, avoidance of risky behaviors and more.

Early Childhood Resource Center (serving Stark County): Programs offered by the Early Childhood Resource Center (ECRC) include parent engagement, peer-to-peer and parent education for 1,373 at-risk parents and early learning for low-income children through the SPARK kindergarten readiness program. The programs at help parents, who might otherwise be at risk of abusing or neglecting their children, find alternate resources, support and coping strategies that allow them to parent effectively, even under stress.

Holmes County General Health District (serving Holmes County): The Holmes County General Health District’s “Falls Prevention Program” (FPP) focuses on adults 65 and over to provide healthy aging opportunities. The organization partners with senior centers, churches, community hospitals and senior living communities to provide these programming opportunities at no cost.

The 2020 grantee creating Healthy Ohioans and Cavity-Free Kids includes:

Mercy Medical Center (serving Stark County): Mercy Medical Center provides quality and affordable oral health care services to patients in a concentrated area of low income, uninsured, under-insured, homeless, immigrants, physically/mentally disabled, elderly and pediatric residents by reducing rates to those who may not otherwise have access to care.

Since the Community Connections program began in 2012, HealthPath has awarded over $1.8 million through 198 grants to organizations throughout Ohio.


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