Who represents Centennial School District's ESL and refugee students?

“We all want our friends, families and the next generation to have a secure future.” – Sumitra Chhetri

Sumitra stands in a park smiling.

Northwest Health Foundation knows when elected officials look like their constituents, the policies they create work better for all of us. So, when a community leader connected to one of our funded partners is running, we want to spotlight them. This does not constitute an endorsement.  

In the last decade, Centennial School District in east Portland went from 16% students of color to 54%. That’s a huge demographic shift in a short amount of time. It’s a safe bet the schools, particularly the students of color, are feeling those growing pains.  

Sumitra Chhetri, a leader in our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Cohort, is running for Centennial School Board, Position 3, because she believes these students deserve representation. As a Bhutanese refugee who moved to Portland with her family in 2008, graduated from David Douglas High School as an ESL student, and now works for Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization, she hopes to bring first-hand experience to the position. 

Sumitra’s brother, a current Centennial High School student, is enthusiastic about his sister’s campaign. He and his friends have been eager to share their input. At Sumitra’s Campaign Kickoff, her brother and two other students stated their support for Sumitra, because she will represent their voices as students of color.

Sumitra graduated from Portland State University with a degree in political science, and she’s actively participated in the political process since high school. As a college student, she traveled to Washington, D.C. to advocate for tuition equity. She also interned with a group lobbying in Washington, D.C. for paper bags instead of plastic in stores. She’s since spent lots of time in Salem advocating with the immigrant and refugee community, is currently vice president of the Oregon Bhutanese Community Organization and a community engagement liaison with the City of Portland, and was recently appointed to the Metro Citizenship Review Committee.

“I understand what students of families of color face,” wrote Sumitra on her campaign website. “Over the years, I have worked with immigrant and refugees families and communities advocating for issues such as access to education, health care, transportation, language, and affordable housing. Lack of health care, transportation, and affordable housing all impacts the learning ability of students in school.”

We wish you luck, Sumitra!

Learn more about Sumitra at her website and on Facebook.

Helen Ying: Connecting the Dots for a Better World

This blog is the first in a series of posts celebrating elected leaders who reflect our equity priorities. At Northwest Health Foundation, we know communities need the power and resources to sit at decision-making tables, to help dispel beliefs and practices that do not promote their health, and to help shape those that do. From local school boards to the state legislature, parents and families should have a voice.

Helen Ying stands in front of a crowd of her supporters, arms outstretched.

Helen Ying stands in front of a crowd of her supporters, arms outstretched.

Helen Ying's personal mission is to engage and empower people to improve their communities, something she's been doing her whole life. As a young teen and recent immigrant, Helen served on Marshall High School's student senate. It didn't matter to her that she was still learning English. She wanted to improve her community, and she'd found a way to do it — becoming a leader. This desire continued through adulthood, bringing Helen to where she is now: a member of Multnomah Education Service District's elected board of directors, National Vice President of Membership for the Chinese American Citizens Alliance, and a force for change in our region.

Of course, Helen's journey wasn't a straight path from student senate to county-level elected official. First, she became a leader in her church, volunteering to coordinate the choir at age sixteen and superintending Sunday school at eighteen. For thirty years, she worked as a math teacher, school counselor and vice principal. During this time, she realized how few laws and policies truly support health, particularly the health of children and youth. When Helen retired, she knew she wanted to do one of two things: become a missionary or run for office. Lucky for all of us, she chose the latter.

Helen marches in the St. Johns Parade, waving with one hand and holding a campaign sign in the other.

Helen marches in the St. Johns Parade, waving with one hand and holding a campaign sign in the other.

Helen didn't win her first campaign for office. In 2011, then Metro Councilor Rex Burkholder approached her and suggested she run for his soon-to-be-vacant seat. Helen campaigned for six months and came in second. But she doesn't consider her campaign a failure. She ran against four white men and received more votes than three of them combined. Furthermore, the connections she made and visibility she gained during that campaign led to dozens of other opportunities.

After her loss, several community leaders approached Helen and invited her to serve on boards and committees. These included the Creation Committee for the Office of Equity for Portland and the Oregon Health Policy Board Coordinated Care Organization Criteria Work Group, among others. She also chairs the Asian American Youth Leadership Conference and serves as a board member for We Can Do Better. So, when Northwest Health Foundation President & CEO Nichole June Maher suggested Helen run for Multnomah Education Service District, Position 2 in 2017, Helen was ready. And this time, she won.

As a Multnomah Education Service District board member, Helen is committed to taking MESD to the next level. She strongly believes she and her fellow board members have the skills they need to succeed, to promote policies that will support health for children and youth.

In Helen's opinion, it is incredibly important for elected officials to reflect the communities they serve. As a young person, she couldn't understand why there weren't any leaders who looked like her. This year, at the Oregon School Board Association Conference, she and the other school board members of color (the most ever in Oregon's history) met to start a caucus to support one another and ensure their voices are heard. Helen wants today's students of color to be able to envision themselves in leadership roles, and seeing school board members who come from their communities making a real difference is part of that.

More than anything else, Helen Ying wants to inspire others, especially young people, to become involved in their communities and strive to make the changes they want to see in the world. Her advice? Start small. Consider your skills, where you can have influence, what needs to change. Make a commitment to yourself. It could be as simple as encouraging family members to vote. Continue taking tiny steps, working your way up to bigger actions. Participate in an issue campaign. Meet with your legislator. Join a committee or board. One day, you might even decide to run for office.

If Helen's story motivated you to get engaged, check out the partnership and learning opportunities on our Open Opportunities page. Maybe you'll find your next small step toward improving your community.

 

Here's What We're Endorsing this November, and Why

At Northwest Health Foundation, we talk a lot about decision-making tables: who’s at them, who’s not at them, and how decisions are being made with or without critical voices. Increasingly, we’ve come to believe the ballot is a critical decision-making table where our communities’ voices are needed more than ever.

We only make endorsements after careful consideration and consultation with community leaders, community-led organizations and our board. If communities agree on endorsing a measure, the issue campaign is community-driven, the measure aligns with our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities goals, and we at Northwest Health Foundation have the capacity to offer our support, then we will make an endorsement. 

 

Here's what we're endorsing in 2016:

YES on Measure 98 – High School Graduation and College and Career Readiness Act

Vote Yes 98 logo

What does it do? Measure 98, if passed, will require Oregon to earmark $800 in funding per high school student per school year for dropout prevention programs, college-level classes and career-technical education.

Who supports the Vote Yes 98 campaign? Latino Network, Coalition of Communities of Color, APANO Statewide Network, PCUN, Adelante Mujeres, NAYA Family Center, STAND for Children and many others.

Why YES? Oregon needs students to graduate ready to contribute to our communities and the economy. Oregon has the third lowest high school graduation rate in the country, and the kids who do graduate often leave school unprepared for college or career. This isn’t good for individuals; it isn’t good for families or communities; and it isn’t good for our economy. By funding dropout prevention programs, we can increase our graduation rates. Increasing the availability of Advanced Placement classes and co-enrollment in community college classes will give students a head start on college preparedness and earning a degree. And career-technical education will prepare students for living wage jobs and provide them with real-world skills. These approaches are proven to work.

 

YES on Measure 26-179 – Bonds to Fund Affordable Housing in Portland

Yes! Affordable Homes logo

What does it do? Measure 26-179 would authorize $258,400,000 in general obligation bonds for building, rehabilitating and preserving affordable housing for low-income households in Portland. The bonds would be paid for with a property tax, 42 cents per $1,000 of assessed value.

Who supports the Yes for Affordable Homes campaign? APANO, Coalition of Communities of Color, Living Cully, OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon, Urban League of Portland and many others.

Why YES? A stable home is a foundation for health. When Portlanders have stable and affordable places to live, they can focus on reaching their professional goals, succeeding in school, taking care of and spending time with family and friends and doing what matters to them. With the current affordable housing shortage, too many Portland residents are experiencing homelessness or paying more than they can afford for housing. By passing Measure 26-179, we can create 1,300 permanently affordable housing units, which will house tens of thousands of people over their lifetime.

 

YES on Proposition 1 – Levy to Fund Affordable Housing in Vancouver

Bring Vancouver Home logo

What does it do? Proposition 1 would establish a levy on residential and commercial properties, 36 cents per $1,000 of assessed value. Vancouver would collect and distribute the money through a competitive public process to private developers, low-income property owners, the housing authority and nonprofits with the goal of preserving and creating affordable housing.

Who supports the Bring Vancouver Home campaign? Healthy Living Collaborative and many others.

Why YES? A stable home is a foundation for health. When Vancouver’s residents have stable and affordable places to live, they can focus on reaching their professional goals, succeeding in school, taking care of and spending time with family and friends and doing what matters to them. With the current affordable housing shortage, seniors, veterans, people with disabilities and hardworking families with children are being priced out of Vancouver. By passing Proposition 1, we can help ensure that everyone in Vancouver has the opportunity to live in a safe, secure, healthy and affordable home.

A Letter from Outgoing Board Chair Rev. W.J. Mark Knutson

Recently I returned from a National Summit on Welcoming the Syrian Refugee in Detroit, Michigan. It was an inspiring summit focused on hospitality and hope in a time in this nation when people of goodwill must speak out.

On the Sunday after my return, I was surprised to the core by a celebration of 20 years as Pastor of Augustana Lutheran Church in Portland. It has been a journey in which we have grown from a small congregation to a large multicultural, multinational, multigenerational welcoming and affirming sanctuary congregation of justice seekers and peacemakers.

For nine of those 20 years, I have had the gift of serving on the board of the Northwest Health Foundation during a period in which Advocacy and Social Justice have been embraced.

Central to the work of the Northwest Health Foundation and the church is a vision of what is intended for the human family where all can fully live and give of themselves for the common good. At the heart of this vision are deep relationships that remind us we are all called to step out for social justice when others may hold back. To be unafraid and willing to take risks, since it is not about us but about the community and world in which we live, is vitally important.

The Northwest Health Foundation has championed a vision of what can and must be for children, families and communities in Oregon and Southwest Washington with the Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative. It has been a vision forged with communities themselves where the gifts and answers are already present. A majority minority board and staff, strong and collaborative partnerships with communities of color, diverse volunteer citizen lobbyists: these are intentional steps in a vision grounded in a commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion. The courageous leadership of President and CEO Nichole June Maher, and a board and staff that truly love and care for each other and our communities, have been vital in this process. Incoming board chair Vanetta Abdellatif knows this well.

If we are to live into the vision we so desire where all are welcome and can truly have life in healthy communities, it will take intentional daily steps with boldness and courage. There will always be voices that say it is impossible, but we know better. If organizations of all types from philanthropy to faith communities, from non-profits to schools, from businesses to government, answer the call to become the diverse and equitable organizations that reflect who we are not only today but 20 years from now, real change will come. The gifts and the knowledge are already present in our communities, and that makes all things possible. Yes, the best is yet to come. 

Sincerely,

Rev. W.J. Mark Knutson

Presenting our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Collaboratives

We are THRILLED to present our ten Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Collaboratives. These ten Collaboratives will work with each other and Northwest Health Foundation for the next five years to advance a shared agenda for healthier childhoods:

APANO Statewide Network
Lead Organization: Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO)
Geography: Oregon

Eastern Oregon Latino Alliance for Children and Families
Lead Organization: EUVALCREE
Geography: Malheur County

Healthy Communities, Healthy Futures
Lead Organization: Healthy Living Collaborative (HLC) of Southwest Washington
Geography: Clark, Cowlitz, Wahkiakum and Skamania counties

Immigrant and Refugee Engage Project
Lead Organization: Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO)
Geography: Portland metro region, as well as Clark, Marion, Hood River and Yamhill counties

Successful Transitions: Integrated Care for Children, Youth and their Families
Lead Organization: Jefferson Regional Health Alliance
Geography: Jackson and Josephine counties

Let's Talk Diversity Coalition
Lead Organization: Let's Talk Diversity Coalition
Geography: Jefferson County

Voz de la Comunidad
Lead Organization: Lower Columbia Hispanic Council
Geography: Clatsop County

Youth Power & Intersectional Collaboration
Lead Organization: Momentum Alliance
Geography: Clark, Multnomah, Clackamas, Washington and Marion counties

Stable Families Intergenerational Collaborative
Lead Organization: Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA)
Geography: Multnomah County

Healthy CAPACES
Lead Organization: Pineros Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste
Geography: Marion and Polk counties
 

 

2016 is the first year of Communities Collaborate, one part of NWHF’s Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative (HB+HC). The Collaboratives selected for HB+HC Communities Collaborate partnerships will work together to be a part of a local and regional transformation of institutions, programs and policies to deliver better outcomes in early life, equity and community health. In the first year of Communities Collaborate, Collaboratives will receive a total of $850,000 in support. 

 

Suk Rhee Joins the 100 Million Healthier Lives Initiative

An illustration of the complex factors that affect the health of one patient.

An illustration of the complex factors that affect the health of one patient.

We are proud to share that NWHF’s Vice President of Strategy & Community Partnership Suk Rhee has joined the Leadership Team of 100 Million Healthier Lives.

100 Million Healthier Lives joins patients, communities, health care systems, public health and other organizations to transform the way the world thinks and acts to improve health. They are committed to 100 million people living healthier lives by 2020.

The collaborative shares many of NWHF’s values and resonates strongly with our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative. 100 Million Healthier Lives and NWHF both prioritize addressing equity gaps, as well as helping all kids get a healthy start in life. We both believe that health is mental, physical, social and spiritual. And we are both committed to community-based solutions.

100 Million Healthier Lives’ first initiative is SCALE (Spreading Community Accelerators Through Learning and Evaluation), a two-year initiative supported by Robert Wood Johnson Foundation that will help communities across the U.S. develop capability to improve health and spread effective community-driven approaches to build a Culture of Health.

While Suk looks forward to being exposed to the great thinkers involved with 100 Million Healthier Lives, she is even more excited to tell the world about the amazing work Oregon and Southwest Washington communities are already doing. 

 

 

Video: NWHF Asks the Communities

Our HB+HC Organizing Grant Communities answered these questions: What does health mean to you? What does community capacity mean to you? How can we help communities improve health?

Watch the video to find out how they answered.

Q&A with NWHF Board Member, Phil Wu

Phil participated in our first ever Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Gathering on March 9, 10 and 11 at Kahneeta Resort & Spa in Warm Springs, OR. Here's what he thought about it:

Q. What did you takeaway from the HB+HC Organizing Grant Communities Gathering in March?

A. We had twenty-five very diverse communities from all parts of Oregon and Southwest Washington, and every community identified and expressed a unique challenge they intend to meet with passion, commitment and leadership. For me, the Gathering highlighted the fact that for many communities the HB+HC framework (or health compass) is a different way of thinking about their work, and they are just at the beginning of the process. Not all of their thoughts have crystallized, nor can they answer all of the questions posed by the compass.

Q. Who did you meet at the Gathering?

A. It was a whirlwind! I wish I could remember every person and conversation that I experienced during the two days, but this won't be possible. For me, it was great to see some names and faces from organizations that I already know. On the other hand, meeting smart, thoughtful and dedicated people from across the state was inspirational.

Q. What stories did you hear that stuck in your mind?

A. While every story is significant, hearing the voices of youth expressed through the Momentum Alliance always tugs at my heart!

Q. What was the most impactful part of the Gathering for you?

A. For me, two parts: First, the small group exercise at the beginning of the Gathering during which tables of five or six grappled with a "blank" HB+HC health compass was telling! For many at that point there were more questions than answers, and this provoked significant thought! Second, I thought the concept of "power" was identified and effectively framed throughout the Gathering.

Q. What was your favorite part of the Gathering?

A. Again, two parts: First, the four-minute stories introducing each community were inspirational and fun! Second, I could have done nothing more during the two days than share food and have open-ended chats!

Q. What are you excited about for the future of the Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative?

A. For me what's most exciting is the building of capacity and "power" of the various communities almost regardless of the outcomes they achieve. And most importantly, a framework will have been created that will help continue the work beyond the Initiative itself.

And, bonus questions!

Q. What is a day like in the life of Phil Wu?

A. OMG! One day is never like the next! With my "semi-retired" status, my days are filled with activities that I truly WANT to do. These include my commitments to Northwest Health Foundation, Community Benefit at Kaiser Permanente and other community endeavors. I also always include time for swimming, walking and cycling, and I always think about great coffee, bread, beer and wine!

Q. What is your favorite cartoon character?

A. I used to draw a variation of Pig Pen: A curious character with a head completely covered in long, unkempt hair, big protruding hands and feet, and no body! This must be an alter ego.

Dental Health Awards Announced

The Oregon Community Foundation, Northwest Health Foundation, Kaiser Permanente and other funding partners are happy to announce that we have awarded fifteen grants to improve children's dental health.

Healthy teeth is more than just preventing cavities. A child with tooth pain has difficulty paying attention in school, spends fewer hours in the classroom and ends up further behind their peers. With this funding strategy, we will improve educational outcomes by supporting the growth of comprehensive children's dental health programs in school settings. These programs will reach communities and regions in Oregon where kids are disproportionately affected by poor dental health.

The grant recipients include:

  • Centro Cultural of Washington County
  • Community Health Centers of Benton and Linn Counties
  • Intermountain Education Service District
  • Kemple Memorial Children's Dental Clinic
  • La Clinica del Valle Family Health Care Center, Inc.
  • Lake Health District
  • Mercy Foundation
  • North Clackamas School District
  • One Community Health
  • Providence Seaside Hospital Foundation
  • Salem-Keizer School District
  • South Lane Children's Dental Clinic
  • Tillamook School District
  • Virginia Garcia Memorial Foundation
  • White Bird Clinic

This funding strategy represents one of Northwest Health Foundation's Regional Improvements, a program in our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative

Announcing Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Organizing Grant Communities

As part of our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative, we have awarded 25 communities in Oregon and Southwest Washington $30,000 each in grant funds. 

 

Over the next year, these communities will use their grant funds to organize themselves for five-year Community-Based Partnerships. Of the 25 Organizing Grant Communities, up to 10 will be selected for Community-Based Partnerships beginning in 2016. These partners will join NWHF in transforming institutions, programs and policies to deliver better outcomes in early life, equity and community health.

We look forward to working with all of the Organizing Grant Communities, who hope to impact everything from African maternal and child health, to families impacted by or at risk for family violence and sexual abuse, to rural Latino communities, and much more. With the support of our partners, Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities will help communities improve health, from birth to high school, by 2020.

Q&A with our Grants Administrator, Fannie Black

Q. Describe a day in the life of Fannie.

A typical day starts with emails and phone calls: responding to inquiries about funding opportunities, resolving issues with our grantee portals or answering/asking questions related to specific grants. Even at times when we don’t have active grant cycles, there is still so much to do. Of course there are also meetings, and the ones I really enjoy are with our community partners, because that’s where I get to learn more about the great work our partners are doing. Those meetings also give me the opportunity to get to know the people doing that work and what inspires and motivates them.

These days I’ve been spending a lot of time on a data migration project. We’re moving our grants management system to a new platform. It’s probably not exciting for most people, but it’s been exciting for me to learn something new and create a more user friendly process for our staff and community partners.

There is also a lot of laughter thrown in there too throughout the day. We love to laugh in the office!

Q. What do you enjoy most about working at NWHF?

I really enjoy learning about our community partners and the work that they’re doing. Before coming to the Foundation, I really wasn’t aware of all the nonprofits in Oregon and SW Washington doing amazing work to improve the overall health of the region. There were some organizations I was familiar with, but I didn’t know what they actually did. It’s also great to see how those organizations partner with each other to make their visions a reality.

I also enjoy working with my colleagues here at the Foundation, as I said before, we love to laugh in the office. We don’t just get along here. The care and respect we have for each other shows every day in how we engage and work with each other. I think the teasing and joking around helps us keep a good balance of work and play in the office. Although our days are busy, we find time to throw some fun in the mix.

Q. How are you currently involved with the Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative?

As the Grant Administrator, I handle a lot of the behind the scenes work to bring our grant opportunities to our partners. From building the grant application, to resolving any technical issues, to ensuring applications are complete, and finally generating grant agreements, I am involved before the grant cycle opens and well after it closes.

Q. If you could change any one thing in your community, what would you change?

My “community” is always expanding. As a multiracial individual, I am part of multiple communities of color, and as an Alaskan my geographic community has expanded to Oregon. Among all of these communities there are some unique issues each faces, but there are some overlapping issues, around social inequity for example, that I would like to see changed. Since coming to the Foundation, I’ve learned so much about the external factors that impact one’s health and the health of communities. One change I would like to see is for the focus of health to be more holistic and community-focused rather than just focused on an individual’s physical health. Our social and physical environment, families, education, access to healthy food options, access to parks, access to affordable healthcare... all of these things impact our health. When focusing just on the physical health of an individual, you miss the whole picture by not taking into account all of those other factors that we may not necessarily have control of.

Q. How do you relate to NWHF’s mission?

The Foundation’s holistic vision of health and support of community-led solutions definitely resonates with me personally. As a Yup’ik Eskimo, a lot of our traditional cultural practices promote and support a healthy lifestyle. Those practices are not only physical, but emotional, spiritual and environmental. For example, subsistence hunting touches on all of these aspects. You have to be physically fit to hunt for wild game. When you get your first catch it is celebrated and the food is shared with the community. You give thanks for a successful hunt, and you don’t hunt for more than what you need. When someone doesn’t have the ability or resources to hunt for their food, they are not forgotten but are supported by the community. I feel very fortunate to be a part of an organization that has a mission and values that align with my own.

Q. What was/is your favorite subject in school?

A. I love math. I looked forward to doing my math homework, and then I chose a college degree where I got to do math all the time. I don’t get to do much math in my graduate studies, but when I do I definitely look forward to it. In my 5th grade class we had these timed math tests: addition, subtraction, multiplication and division with a bunch of problems. You had to see how many you could complete in the time allotted, and of those how many you got correct. It always came down to me and one other student.

I loved those quizzes! And I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I recreated them when I was in college, and I’ve recently thought about doing that again. I actually have a couple friends who are interested in taking them with me. It’ll be fun, and I play to win!

Q.  If you had a theme song, what would it be?

A. So I have a friend that loves to sing that “Take a load off Fannie” song to me almost every time we see each other. It’s kind of become my song now, so many people have sung it to me, and I just love that it inspires people to serenade me! So please, sing away!

I have to be honest though. I’ve never really paid attention to the lyrics, but I definitely connect with the chorus line. I don’t just love it because it has my name in it. We all feel the weight of things every day, in our personal and work lives, and sometimes it’s not easy to lighten that weight, or there may be factors that are out of your control. But, having colleagues or friends and family that can help lighten that load is so important. I feel fortunate that I have that kind of support here at the Foundation.

 

NWHF Asks the Kids

With the launch of Northwest Health Foundation's Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative, we wanted to speak to some of the key informants of our work. So our summer intern Nadia visited the Boys & Girls Club of Portland Metropolitan Area and asked the kids a couple questions...

HB+HC Organizing Grant Application Period Open!

Northwest Health Foundation is thrilled to announce that our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Organizing Grant Request for Proposals has been finalized, and the application period for Organizing Grants is now open!

Full application instructions are available in the RFP:

 

Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities Initiative will help communities improve health, from birth to high school, by 2020. Organizing Grants will equip 30 communities (self-identified by geography, identity, and/or experience) to organize themselves in preparation for five-year Community-Based Partnerships by providing $20,000-$30,000 funding per community, as well as creating opportunities to build relationships and gain exposure to essential concepts about early life and health, policy, advocacy, leadership development and other objectives to be identified by participants.

After the year-long Organizing Grant period is over, the 30 self-identified communities will have the chance to apply for five-year Community-Based Partnerships, of which ten will be awarded. These ten communities will receive $50,000 to $150,000 per community each year for five years (for a total of $250,000-$750,000) to build the community alliances that will drive Healthy Beginnings+Health Communities objectives. By 2020, we will have achieved measurable results both in building community capacity for improving health and in making positive improvements to physical, mental, social, and spiritual well-being from pre-birth to ninth grade. 

 

Thank you to everyone who attended Outreach Sessions and gave us feedback on our draft RFP! The final RFP has been greatly improved by your input.

If you have not yet had the chance to attend an Outreach Session to learn more about Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities, do not fear! There are more coming up. Please check our website for dates and locations. Or, you can watch our recorded webinar here.

Two New Funding Opportunities to Improve Children's Dental Health

Transient

Too many children in Oregon are living with untreated, but entirely preventable,
 cavities and tooth decay. There are also regions and communities of Oregon where
kids are disproportionately affected by poor dental health. 

Yet we now know more than ever that healthy teeth help set the stage for lifelong health and opportunity.

Working with school districts, community-based nonprofits and healthcare organizations,
we can improve children's dental health.

The Oregon Community Foundation, Northwest Health Foundation, Kaiser Permanente
and other funding partners are pleased to offer two funding opportunities to do
just that. These funding opportunities represent one of Northwest Health Foundation's
Regional Improvements, a program in our Healthy Beginnings+Healthy Communities
Initiative.

Learn more here.

Hello from our new Community Engagement Officers

We are excited to introduce you to our newest team members!

Jen Matheson and Michael Reyes Andrillon will help guide our grantmaking and community building.

We recorded their hellos this week. They'll be traveling throughout Oregon and SW Washington meeting our past, current and future partners. Meet them in this video, or in your community this Spring!

2013 Year in Review

2013 WAS A MOMENTOUS YEAR OF CHANGE FOR NORTHWEST HEALTH FOUNDATION.

We supported more than 30 community partners in their efforts to fluoridate Portland's water.

We supported more than 30 community partners in their efforts to fluoridate Portland's water.

We welcomed new colleagues, took on new challenges, and set a long- term direction for the foundation. We committed to deeper partnerships, true statewide & SW Washington service, and a nimble foundation focused on action. Below is a snapshot of our 2013 activities.  None of these are possible without the work done by our many community partners committed to advancing a broad vision of community health across Oregon and SW Washington. Thank you!

WE CLARIFIED OUR COMMITMENT AND SET OUR DIRECTION.

  • Our board of directors committed to a long-term endowment strategy to serve our communities for generations to come.
  • We recommitted ourselves to serving our entire service area of Oregon and SW Washington and set about building relationships in new areas.
  • We adopted a five-year strategic initiative, Healthy Beginnings, Healthy Communities, to guide our endowed investments through 2018.
  • We joined with Kaiser Permanente to focus the Kaiser Permanente Community Fund in three key areas of economic opportunity, educational attainment and healthy beginnings.
  • We committed to using all of our tools and resources to further our mission including Mission-Related Investments and explicit minority and women contracting policies.
NWHF President Nichole Maher joins Grout Elementary students in a game of foursquare during a  Playworks  site visit.

NWHF President Nichole Maher joins Grout Elementary students in a game of foursquare during a Playworks site visit.

WE CELEBRATED OUR PAST AND WELCOMED OUR FUTURE.

  • We celebrated the contributions and future of departing staff members and welcomed new staff leadership.
  • We built a board and staff that is representative of Oregon and Southwest Washington by age, race, geographic roots, and LGBTQ identities.
  • When asked by them, we joined an organized, committed coalition of community organizations working to fluoridate Portland's water.
  • We committed to increasing our policy advocacy capacity and investments to change health outcomes.
  • We honored health care transformation in making our final investments  within our committed healthcare reform cohort.
  • We supported 150 Community Advisory Council members in attending the Coordinated Care Organization's Summit.

WE PURSUED LEARNING IN NEW COMMUNITIES.

  • We pursued deeper understanding of the continuum of disability to increase relationships and opportunities to partner.
  • We chartered the Board Community Engagement Committee and Equity Committee to oversee, advise and engage in our work across Oregon’s diverse communities.
  • We sponsored a task force to bring stakeholders on both sides of water fluoridation to study actionable oral health improvement programs.
  We visited 17 counties to hear their vision for health.

 We visited 17 counties to hear their vision for health.

WE INCREASED OUR REACH.

  • We created an open sponsorship process to expand our support for community events in rural communities, communities of color and organizations led by and serving people with disabilities.
  • We visited communities in Benton, Clackamas, Clark, Clatsop, Coos, Cowlitz, Curry, Deschutes, Douglas, Jackson, Klamath, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Pacific, Washington and Yamhill Counties to build relationships and understand their vision for health.
  • Beyond statewide-impact grants, we made grants serving more than 63% of counties in our service area of Oregon and SW Washington.

OUR FUNDED PARTNERS

Innovation Fund

American Leadership Forum of Oregon
The ARC of Benton County
Basic Rights Oregon
Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO)
Chinook Indian Nation
City Club of Portland
City of Brookings
Committee for Safe and Successful Children
Consejo Hispano del Lower Columbia
Coos County Public Health
Forest Grove School District
The Jessie F. Richardson Foundation
Klamath Crisis Center
Klamath Youth Development Center
Leightman Maxey Foundation
The Lund Report
McKenzie River Gathering Foundation
Miracle Theatre Group
Muslim Educational Trust
Oregon Public Health Institute
Oregon Voice
Playworks
Portland State University Foundation
Potlatch Foundation
Togo Community in Oregon

Health Care Reform

American Academy of Family Physicians - Oregon Chapter
American Heart Association
Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO)
Association of Oregon Community Mental Health Programs
CAUSA Oregon
Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO)
Central City Concern
Children First for Oregon
Coalition of Community Health Clinics
Health Care for ALL - Oregon
Human Services Coalition of Oregon
Main Street Alliance of Oregon
NAMI-Oregon
NorthEast Oregon Network
Oregon Action
Oregon Center for Public Policy
Oregon Coalition of Local Health Officials
Oregon Developmental Disabilities Coalition
Oregon Foundation for Reproductive Health
Oregon Latino Health Coalition
Oregon Primary Care Association
Oregon Public Health Association
Oregon Rural Health Association
Oregon School-Based Health Care Network
Oregon State Public Interest Research Group (OSPIRG)
Portland Youth and Elders Council
Sisters of the Road
The Next Door Inc.
The-TREE Institute
Tobacco-Free Coalition of Oregon
Urban League of Portland
We Can Do Better

Kaiser Permanente Community Fund

Albina Ministerial Alliance
Catholic Community Services of the Mid-Willamette and Central Coast
Centro Cultural of Washington County
Coalition of Communities of Color
Colin McCormack
Cowlitz County Community Network
Craft3
Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon
Hacienda Community Development Corporation
Incight Company
Latino Business Alliance
Latino Network
LGBTQ Community Center Fund
OneAmerica
Oregon Latino Health Coalition
Oregon Oral Health Coalition
Pathfinders of Oregon
Playworks
REACH Community Development, Inc.
Urban League of Portland
Verde

Water Fluoridation

Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO)
Center for Intercultural Organizing (CIO)
Coalition of Communities of Color
Healthy Kids, Healthy Portland
Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO)
Latino Network
Native American Youth and Family Center
Oregon Latino Health Coalition
Oregon Voice
Upstream Public Health
Urban League of Portland

Sponsorships

All Hands Raised
Asian Health and Service Center
"Asian Pacific American Chamber of Commerce of Oregon and Southwest
Washington (APACC)"
Basic Rights Education Fund
Bay Area Hospital
Cascade Pacific Resource Conservation & Development
Catholic Community Services of the Mid-Willamette and Central Coast
CAUSA Oregon
Center for Women, Politics & Policy, Portland State University
City of Portland Bureau of Transportation
City of Vancouver
CoActive Connections
Coalition of Community Health Clinics
"Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Portland Alumae Chapter"
DisOrient Asian American Film Festival of Oregon
Ecotrust
Familias en Accion
Family Access Network Foundation
Family Building Blocks
Financial Beginnings
Future Generations Collaborative
Highlands Neighborhood Association
Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber
Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO)
Incight Company
International Center for Traditional Childbearing
J Bar J Youth Services
Ke Kukui Foundation
Kukatonon Children’s African Dance Troupe
Latino Network
Legacy Health System
LGBTQ Community Center Fund
Mano A Mano Family Center
Momentum Alliance
Native American Youth and Family Center
North Coast Food Web
Office of Rural Health, OHSU
Old Mill Center for Children and Families
Options for Southern Oregon
Oregon Area Jewish Committee
Oregon Oral Health Coalition
Oregon Public Health Association
Oregon Public Health Institute
Oregon School-Based Health Care Network
Organizing People, Activating Leaders (OPAL)
Playworks
Providence Milwaukie Foundation
Red Lodge Transition Services
ShelterCare
Skamania Klickitat Community Network
Southern Coos Health Foundation
Spect-Actors Collective
Ten Rivers Food Web
The Asian Reporter Foundation
United Way of Jackson County
Urban League of Portland
We Can Do Better
Willamette Farm and Food Coalition
Womenspace, Inc.

President's Message - September 2012

Northwest Health Foundation President Nichole Maher shares the Foundation’s current process of examining it’s potential role in helping create the next healthiest generation. While the Foundation’s core principles will not change, over the next six months, the board and staff will be looking at new ways to achieve the most impact in our work.