United Way & Live Well Wake Award $1M To 5 Wake County Nonprofits Addressing Systemic Barriers That Increase COVID-19 Risks In Communities Of Color
Live Well Wake, in partnership with United Way of the Greater Triangle, today announced that five Wake County nonprofit organizations will be awarded a total of $1M over two years to address the systemic barriers that have allowed for local communities of color to disproportionately experience negative impacts from COVID-19. The awards were given through the county’s newly established Community Innovation Grant, which was created for the purpose of ensuring that everyone in Wake County has a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible and to eliminate or reduce the personal circumstances that can negatively impact an individual’s health and well-being.
The following organizations will each receive $100,000 per year for two years:
- CASA NC
- Families Together
- Oak City Cares
- Southeastern Wake Adult Day Center
- StandUp-SpeakOut of North Carolina
“We’re thrilled that this money is going to organizations that can make a real and meaningful difference in the lives of our residents,” said Sig Hutchinson, Live Well Wake Co-Chair and Chair of the Wake County Board of Commissioners.
“Saving and improving lives is something we all strive for, and we are proud that funding is going towards organizations that will continue to serve our diverse communities for years to come,” added Leigh Bleecker, Live Well Wake Co-Chair and Assistant Vice President for Finance and Divisional Chief Financial Officer for Duke Raleigh Hospital.
The Community Innovation Grant was funded by a portion of the $3.8M grant awarded to Wake County Health and Human Services by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in late 2021.
Live Well Wake contracted United Way of the Greater Triangle to build and facilitate the grant process from beginning to end. The process included constructing the application, designing a clear rubric for evaluation, promoting the grant opportunity countywide, and working closely with Live Well Wake as well as Population Health Improvement Partners and Shaw University to ensure an equitable process driven by impact. Priority areas for funding were set by the results of Live Well Wake’s Community Health Needs Assessment process and included access to healthcare, mental health supports, and safe and affordable housing.
“We are honored to partner with Live Well Wake and Wake County to do one of the things we do best at United Way: design and execute a community-driven funding process that is fair and accessible. It’s important for our grantmaking strategies to be innovative and equity-driven while also ensuring that money gets into the hands of high-performing organizations quickly, efficiently, and fairly. This partnership brought that vision to life, and we look forward to many more to come,” said Eric Guckian, United Way of the Greater Triangle’s President and CEO. “It’s truly an honor to partner with Live Well Wake on this important effort.”
“Community health progress depends on great partnerships and having partners like the United Way of the Greater Triangle to facilitate the selection and award these grants is an important step towards ensuring a just and equitable awards process,” added Ashton Smith, Co-Chair of Live Well Wake.
In total, the Community Innovation Grant received 26 applications for funding, with requests totaling $2.6M per year. Each application was first reviewed by three community readers before final decisions were made by a committee of representatives from Live Well Wake and United Way. The community readers were not associated with any funding requests and were identified by Live Well Wake staff for their connection and knowledge of the work represented in applications.
For more information about Live Well Wake and the Community Innovation Grant, visit livewellwake.org.