Jefferson Regional Foundation marks its 10th anniversary in March, and it will celebrate that milestone with a new initiative and grant opportunity, the Community Voice Fund.
The “Then, Ten, and Time Ahead” anniversary theme provides an opportunity for a renewed focus on engaging community members on strategies for increasing overall health and well-being in the towns and municipalities Jefferson Regional Hospital serves, according to Chief Executive Officer Dr. Trisha Gadson. The Community Voice Fund will provide grants of up to $35,000 for nonprofit organizations and/or resident groups who are partnering with nonprofit organizations to convene residents, partners and stakeholders of the Jefferson service area to accomplish that goal.
Jefferson Regional Foundation was created when the former Jefferson Hospital became part of the Allegheny Health Network. The Foundation is dedicated to grantmaking in the South Hills and Mon Valley areas of Pittsburgh that will improve the health and vitality of residents, and it has awarded more than $20 million in grants since its inception. It also created the Jefferson Community Collaborative, an active network of 100 plus community-serving organizations that share a mission of bringing together change-makers to positively impact the health and vitality of communities south of Pittsburgh.
Although the foundation has consistently partnered with nonprofit organizations to offer resources for unmet needs, the Community Voice Fund illustrates the importance and necessity for residents to have an active voice in setting priorities and objectives that accompany strategies and planning that affect their communities, Gadson said.
“The passion, pride, drive, resilience, and ingenuity of residents within the Jefferson service area, often who are under-resourced and over-burdened, cannot be understated,” Gadson said. “Faced with the systemic challenges of racism, poverty, housing insecurity, community violence, and transportation, no person or entity is better poised to address community needs than residents with lived experiences.”
Organizations and community groups within and serving communities in the JRF service area can collaborate on a Community Voice Fund application, Gadson said. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, starting this month through April 28. Final reports from organizations that receive funding will be shared.
The Community Voice Fund guidelines and application can be found on the foundation’s website and on its Jefferson Community Collaborative website.
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