Trinity unveils health grants

STEUBENVILLE–Trinity Health System invited area nonprofits Friday to collaborate with them to improve community health.

The hospital unveiled its new Community Health Improvement Grant program to representatives of 20 groups working with the disadvantaged and underserved communities in six counties it serves — Jefferson, Harrison, Belmont and Tuscarawas in Ohio, and Brooke and Hancock in West Virginia.

The goal is to promote and provide a healthier lifestyle for Ohio Valley residents, Marketing Director Laurie Labishak, the grant coordinator, said during a meeting at the Prime Time Senior Center on Lovers Lane.

The grant program is focused specifically on significant needs identified in Trinity’s most recent community health needs assessment.

The hospital conducts a needs assessment every three years to help it and community partners identify and address priority health and social needs faced by residents and the region.

Proposals should address overall health and wellness, including the reduction of obesity due to inactivity and limited access to recreation; diabetes; heart disease; maternal and child health; behavioral health and substance abuse; and senior adult health services.

“We’re looking for projects you can do within your nonprofit, one year in length, that will address one of the goals in our community health needs assessment and plan,” she said.

Recipients must collaborate with Trinity Health System or one of its clinics, she said.

“Think outside the box,” Labishak said. Think about how we can help you meet your goals and at the same time, improve the health of our community.”

She said the people benefiting from the programs need not be Trinity Health System patients.

“We’re not looking to make money off this,” she said. “We’re looking to improve the health of the communities we serve.”

Grant amounts will range from at least $20,000 to no more than $100,000.

She said Trinity Health System will provide funds up to four consecutive years for the same project, so participants should also think about how they can be sustained once the grant funding goes away.

The grants can be used to “support the delivery of services vital to improving health and wellbeing and improving health equity,” officials said. The application period opens Monday and runs through Sept. 8. Successful applicants will be announced in November for projects to be conducted between January and December 2024.

Labishak said it’s part of the CommonSpirit Health Community Health Improvement Grants program. Trinity is part of CommonSpirit Health, which was created in 2019, when Catholic Health Initiatives and Dignity Health came together to create a national health system.

“Being a part of CommonSpirit Health allows for this program to benefit our local community,” Labishak said. “We are excited to work with local nonprofit organizations collaboratively to find creative ways to improve the health of the communities we serve.”

Matt Grimshaw, chief executive officer, said any time Trinity can partner with the community to improve health, “it’s a good thing.”

“Providing funding, as well as human resources, to make an impact is a win-win for all of us,” he said

Michael Bilton, system senior director for community health and community benefit at CommonSpirit, said they “strive to be intentional and strategic in our community outreach, partnerships, and philanthropic giving.”

“It is important for our hospitals to use their resources in ways that help improve high-priority, locally relevant health issues,” Bilton said. “These grants are one example of that.”

Bilton also said the grant program “reflects a commitment to partnering with the communities we serve, and to stimulating collaboration among others.”

“Grant applications must include collaborating partner organizations helping to deliver services and not be solely about one agency’s work,” he said.

Interested organizations can learn more about the grant program, including eligibility criteria, how to apply, and a local contact for questions, by visiting https://www.commonspirit.org/communitygrants


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