OUR NEWEST GRANTEES FOR 2018-2019 Grants Supporting Innovative Approaches to Local Health Issues
African Cultural Services Inc. (aka AFRICANO) We are trying to show the young kids who come to Africano that the activities and fun they have here is how to lead a healthy lifestyle. We want to excite them about what they do here by showing them that dancing to traditional music from their home countries with their friends benefits them by strengthening their mind, body, and soul. All of the kids who are interested will “apply” to participate in the program, and ten of them will be accepted. This is to show that they are committed to the implementation of the project. The ten kids will be given a Fitbit to wear for the month of August so that they can track their steps, calories, distance, and active minutes. The kids will keep track of their activities and the kinds of snacks they eat, as well as how they are feeling in a Health Packet folder that we are designing. Salma Semakula, who is a wellness educator and part of the African community, owns the Waltham based organization Sanyu Wellness. She will be hired to teach the kids how to set health related goals and how to reach them. Over the four weeks, Salma will come twice in the first week- once to introduce herself and what she will be doing with the kids, and the second time to begin in depth programming. She will then come three more times- once a week until the end of the program. The kids will then be able to bring home what they learned so that their families can benefit from the program as well. The major takeaways the kids will get will be that activities like dancing are good exercise, the fact that it makes them happy is good for their mind, and having a connection to their culture is good for their soul, as well as that these lessons can and should be carried out throughout their lifetime and shared with friends and family.
Asperger/Autism Network, Inc AANE will offer a series of small group workshops to help older adolescents and young adults with AS/ASD craft a health focused “elevator speech” to be used to introduce themselves and their healthcare needs to new providers. The goal is to allow those who may have anxiety and trouble expressing themselves well in new situations an opportunity to prepare and practice in a non-stressful environment with others who have similar issues. Each participant will learn to describe their diagnosis, needs and personal challenges to adult health providers as they transition from pediatric practices and settings. Issues to be highlighted could include what they need from the relationship, side effects and symptoms they may have experienced, how they best communicate, sensory difficulties, issues around undressing. Each participant will attend three 90 minutes sessions of up to five participants. Session one will introduce the concept, including brainstorming, discussion of disclosure of autism, and focus on identifying the individual issues that should be included in the “elevator speech.” Session two will focus on developing the speech and Session three will include practicing and honing the speech in dyads and then before the whole group. An optional fourth session will be offered to those who would like an individual practice session with a health care professional. This would be a member of the AANE community who works in healthcare settings. AANE will offer six series of workshops during the next two years and will arrange for locations in three of the target communities in which to hold them. The project coordinator will develop curriculum, facilitate the sessions, evaluate and revise the curriculum as necessary, identify guest speakers and interviewers as necessary and prepare a final evaluation and report as to the efficacy of the approach and recommendations for future programming. The administrator/registrar will publicize the program, recruit and register participants, and assist in finding suitable community locations.
Brookline Department of Public Health July 1, 2018, is the start date for sales of recreational marijuana in the Commonwealth. Brookline is anticipating local businesses to start selling products then as well. The Brookline community has already witnessed a dramatic increase in vaping in high schools; it is paramount that Brookline develops educational materials about the unhealthy consequences of vaping and marijuana usage. The target audience will be teens, young adults, parents/guardians, and school personnel. Currently, legislatures and the broader community have been discussing how to implement the law. Unfortunately, there’s very limited information on the impact of the law, products to be sold, and the different modes of consumption. What is missing is basic information about the nuts and bolts of vaping and marijuana: what vaping is, the variety of marijuana products that will be sold and what they look like, different ways marijuana can be consumed (inhaling, vaping, edibles), what marijuana packaging will look like, the paraphernalia used in vaping and consuming marijuana, how to understand how much it is safe to consume. Due to this uncertainty, an educational campaign is a necessity. In collaboration with our local cable company Brookline Interactive Group (B.I.G), we will create, write and produce, a “Products and Paraphernalia” video. BHS student peer leaders and the project coordinator will organize a fall travelling road show to educate the community.
Needham Community Farm NCF will plan and host 4 u-pick field trips paired with healthy cooking demonstrations. Monthly from June through September, NCF will arrange transportation and lead 20-30 individuals in a u-pick visit to the our primary farm site. Participants will receive a bag of seasonal produce and then travel to the Center at the Heights for a cooking demonstration of a healthy recipe utilizing the produce they harvested. NCF will work with a nutritionist to develop and lead cooking demonstrations and produce recipe cards to distribute at the demonstration as well as at our Mobile Market and local food pantry. Recipes will be translated into five commonly spoken languages (Chinese, Spanish, Russian, Arabic and Creole). Field trips will be open to Needham Housing Authority residents and older adults who participate in programming at the Center at the Heights.
Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Cross Cultural Student Emotional Wellness (CCCSEW) & Brookline Asian American Family Network (BAAFN) We aim to improve the emotional well-being of Brookline Asian American families by implementing a novel multimedia psychoeducational intervention for parents. Over the past 10 years, mental health concerns have become more pronounced in Asian American communities. Research shows that Asian American youth suffer higher rates of depression and suicide compared to their White counterparts. Despite the urgency of this public health issue, transformative interventions for community members remain lacking due to limitations in funding, expertise, and community engagement. Brookline has a high concentration of Asian American families, and is a town committed to promoting racial and ethnic equity. A major concern expressed by Brookline Asian immigrant parents is their inability to detect their child’s mental health challenges and suicidality. Through focus groups with former students, social justice initiatives within Brookline schools have been positive and impactful. Yet an unintended consequence of such efforts is the widening of the cultural and generational gap between students and their Asian immigrant parents. Since there is no parallel programming targeted towards parents, students indicate that their parents do not share the same level of sensitivity to cultural issues. As described by a student: “it’s hard to learn those values at school and have someone at home not accepting the things school is teaching us.” Another student expressed: “I was growing tired and resentful of my parents and I didn’t want to explain everything to them.” One student revealed her communication with her parents was mostly “transactional” (e.g., getting from one place to another), and rarely “about how I feel.” Addressing these challenges is critical for improving the social and emotional health of Asian American families. We will develop first-person narratives among Asian American Brookline parents and youth, a weekly newsletter, and a video series for Asian immigrant parents in order to: (1) decrease stigma surrounding mental health, (2) provide tools for effective communication for family members, and (3) improve the psychological well-being of Asian American families at the community level. Our project is innovative because it puts theory into practice, and utilizes multiple platforms for engagement to address both parent and child concerns.
Healthy Waltham Healthy Waltham is Waltham’s only non-profit health promotion organization engaged in the fight against obesity and unhealthy lifestyles. Formed as a healthy communities coalition in 2004, we have operated as an independent 501c3 since 2013. We promote healthy eating and active living opportunities to the most vulnerable Waltham residents including families with young children, recent immigrants, and low-income seniors. Our goal is to remove barriers to access, education, and affordability, making healthy living opportunities more accessible to all. We provide healthy cooking classes, food tastings and demonstrations using local produce, and promote healthy physical activity through our Waltham Walks program. Working collaboratively across Waltham, we engage volunteers in numerous efforts for the benefit of our community. Most recently, we launched Waltham Connections for Healthy Aging, a coalition of older adults and local agencies working to make Waltham more age-friendly, and the Watch City Market, a mobile pantry serving over 500 families monthly. Our team of three consists of Stacey Tully, Executive Director, Maria DiMaggio, Communications & Development, and Rebecca Toutant, RD, Nutrition Educator.
Funds will be used for a community tea and outreach program to expand efforts to reach isolated, low-income and immigrant seniors. Teas will be held at senior housing, the Council on Aging, and donated venues. The purpose is to reach out to seniors in need of social connections and engagement, and also reach out to seniors who do not normally utilize the Council on Aging services to make them feel welcome and aware of service offerings.
Waltham Partnership for Youth, Inc. Waltham Partnership for Youth (WPY) works with diverse stakeholders across sectors to improve opportunities and outcomes for youth in Waltham. In 2017, WPY identified transportation infrastructure as a key issue affecting access to social services for Waltham residents. In response, WPY has partnered with the 128 Business Council to develop a study that examines existing policy and practice in Waltham around transportation, as well as gaps in current infrastructure as it pertains to connecting children and families to the services they need. The study aims to: • Articulate the problem and why it is important • Summarize current policy and knowledge through literature review and community mapping • Identify key gaps and issues in current transportation infrastructure and the role of key stakeholders • Analyze possible solutions, drawing on successful models in other communities; and • Provide recommendations for action.
WATCH Community Development Corporation The WATCH walk-in Housing Clinic is a local community resource center that fills a gap in local housing support, while also creating a connection with regional resources. Located on the South Side of Waltham, in the downtown area most heavily populated by low-income tenants, the clinic serves as a safety net for low-income Waltham households suffering a financial or housing crisis. The project, an 11-year partnership with Brandeis University, is a walk-in clinic that provides one-on-one, confidential counseling and assistance to tenants with threatened evictions, health code violations, searches for affordable housing, and applications for public housing and other supports, such as fuel assistance and food stamps. The free Clinic is open two evenings per week, and part-time days at the WATCH office. CHNA Community grant funding would support a new project of tracking outcomes for those who come to the clinic for help. After 10 years of running the clinic solely on volunteer students, interns, and a Brandeis Professor, Laura Goldin, WATCH hired a part time Clinic Coordinator in the summer of 2017. This has enabled us to give more support to the students and increase the clinic hours. This project adds a new component to the services offered and enables us to move to the next step to begin tracking outcomes for our clinic work. We have updated our initial intake form to include space for taking data on outcomes. Staff and trained Brandeis students will conduct follow-up phone calls to residents who have come to our one-on-one Housing Clinic approximately 1 month after the initial visit. This increased attention to follow up support would: 1) enable WATCH to track effectiveness of our work; 2) enable us to further assist clients with any additional needs they may have ,thus ensuring a more positive outcome; 3) provide WATCH data to inform referral processes to community partners, identify gaps in community resources, and inform our strategic planning and advocacy to better serve the low income and immigrant households of Waltham and nearby towns.
Wellesley Health Department and Wellesley Area Schools Food Rescue Program The Wellesley Collaborative Food Rescue Program-The project includes four strategic components. Outcome measures, reflected in the Timeline, vary for each component. 1) Expand the program within Wellesley and the town of Needham: The project manager will oversee food rescue implementation at Dana Hall, Babson Executive Conference Center (Wellesley) and Needham High School, who are all interested in joining the existing collaborative. Olin College of Engineering began implementation last fall, but did not secure sufficient authorization of standard operating procedures and has been put on hold. Consulting and assistance will be provided to these schools, in order to standardize their procedures to adhere to food safety requirements stipulated in the FDA Food Code, and to procure approvals from the health departments. 2) Educate CHNA 18 communities about food waste, school-based food rescue opportunities and the initiatives being implemented in Wellesley and Needham. The goal of the outreach component of the project is to encourage and inspire the implementation of similar initiatives in their communities. This will be accomplished through one or more intra-town presentations, organized in conjunction with Wellesley’s 3R Working Group, in which representatives from each town’s sustainability group, health department and food services providers will be invited. Assistance in implementing programs, such as the provision of a Standard Operating Procedures template, will be offered. 3) Create and solidify partnerships with area food rescue organizations. Successful and productive food donation programs rely on the ability of food rescue organizations (FROs) to collect and redistribute surplus food; if the FRO does not have the capacity – refrigerated trucks and available drivers – food cannot be moved from food donor to hunger relief organizations. As such, it is imperative to build strong relationships, through a series of meetings and on-going communications with the FROs, such that they can build their capacity and resources relative to expected volume of food donations. This will be accomplished through a series of meetings and discussions among FROs and food donors and collaborators.
Grants to Support Mental Health and Well-Being 2013
The results of a community-wide health needs assessment conducted by CHNA 18 (click here to see the assessment) showed that issues related to mental health and mental well-being were a major concern for all nine cities and towns within the CHNA, particularly among youth and the elderly. While mental health issues are becoming more prevalent, funding for programs to address these issues is being reduced or eliminated, leaving gaps in services and limiting access to care for individuals seeking mental health support. CHNA 18 decided to focus the next round of funding on supporting efforts to reduce gaps in service. Below are the five programs that CHNA 18 funded for three years, ending Fall 2016.
Family Access: Touchpoints Parent Discussion Groups
Target: Families of young children in which the parents have high indicators of family stress with parenting support services to improve their ability to parent and raise their children.
Program Overview: In an early childhood center based on the Brazelton Touchpoints Approach. Focusing a curriculum on childhood developmental touchpoints that cause stress to parents, these groups will be offered annually to support parents as their children grow. Project Highlights:
1) Educate families with children enrolled in an early childcare center in the latest understanding of child development with the purpose of building parental mastery and confidence in anticipating and responding to their child’s behavior. 2) Develop curriculum for groups specialized for infant, toddler and preschool development, and a unique curriculum for Hispanic immigrant families to be conducted in Spanish; establish and implement evaluation tools to measure outcomes; provide parents a way to assess their personal progression; establish collaborations with other early education centers to expand our capacity to reach additional families and ensure sustainability.Waltham Partnership for Youth
Below staff lead a bilingual parenting class for limited or non-English speakers at the preschool. Parents attend English language and parenting classes while children attend preschool down the hall.
Brookline Department of Public Health: Youth Wellness Project
Target: Teens suffering from depression, anxiety and other mental health issues; focus on LGBTQ and teens using drugs/alcohol.
Program Overview: The proposed project will improve the wellness of Brookline youth by raising awareness of mental health problems and reducing stigma and other barriers to treatment. Project Highlights:
1) Depression awareness curriculum for providers offered in collaboration with Boston Children’s Hospital designed to increase awareness of youth mental health issues, recognize warning signs, and know where and how to refer students.
2) Work closely with the Brookline High School Peer Leadership Program to provide resources and organizational support for the implementation of a peer-to-peer awareness campaign. This campaign will focus on 1)raising the perception of harm from the use of alcohol, marijuana and other drugs to self-medicate and; 2)reducing stigma and other barriers to getting help among youth.
3) Target two populations with special risk factors -- LGBTQ youth and students who are self-medicating with alcohol, marijuana and other drugs. The project also will explore possible correlations between race, culture, ethnicity and gender as it pertains to rates of youth mental health issues and other preventive factors.
REACH Beyond Domestic Violence: Child and Adolescent Therapy Program Expansion
Target: Children ages 0-3 experiencing violence in the home.
Program Overview: To expand and improve access to mental health Services for children who have witnessed or experienced domestic violence; The proposed project would address the need for mental health services for children who have witnessed or experienced violence in the home, using practices that are informed by the latest research. We currently serve children ages 3-18, and we would like to expand our work to include specialized Attachment Therapy with children ages 0-3 and their caregivers. There is currently a gap in services for children in this age range because most agencies are overloaded with cases, some have to deal with insurance issues, and the impact of violence is not detected in infancy, despite growing research to the contrary. Program highlights:
Deliver evidence-based Attachment Therapy to children ages 0-3 and their caregivers;
Increase our ability to offer trauma informed therapy to more families in the community by expanding our internship program;
Implement two distinct support groups for children exposed to violence and teenagers who have experienced violence in a dating relationship
Design and develop a therapeutic environment based on Sensory Motor Intervention and a SMART Room model in our community office space and our residential shelter.
Newton Health and Human Services Department: Dear Stress, Let’s Break Up
Target: Middle and high school age children in Newton
Program Overview: Raise awareness about youth stress, the negative impacts, and resources available for managing stress in healthy ways. The timing for this project is ideal because it builds upon momentum generated during the Newton Youth Summits. The summits were attended by parents, teens, educators, elected officials, school resource officers and other community stakeholders. The Youth Summits focused on challenges, needs and gaps and what the community could do to help. Action groups were formed to discuss solutions to the challenges and found that two principal topics emerged from the Youth Summits: communication between teens and adults and youth stress. Youth stress was further broken down to topics such as stress that is associated with academics, the college process, sleep deprivation, and maintaining the balance between school life and out-of-school life. Project highlights:
Programs will include guest speakers, workshops, awareness events, and development of web and social media based tips and resources.
Monthly themes to be determined by students and parents.
Programs may include time management workshops and tips, relaxation exercises and presentations on organization planning and skills related to improved executive functioning.
In addition to workshops and guest presentations, this project will have a web-based presence and leverage social media as a tool for reaching young people and their parents. The details of what guest speakers will present will be determined in year one of the project by focus groups including staff, youth and parents.
altham Partnership for Youth: The Playtime Program
Target: Homeless parents and children living in a hotel in Waltham.
Program Overview: Promote positive parent child interactions, promote bonding, and strengthen parenting skills with the goal of reducing toxic stress and promoting healthy child physical, emotional and mental development. Program highlights:
The Playtime Program offers children from birth to age 5 the opportunity to learn and practice essential skills related to language, social-emotional development, motor, and sensory skills. Each 90 minute session will include age-appropriate play activities that foster sharing, turn taking, language development, problem solving, decision making and conflict resolution. As parents and children play together, their bonding will be strengthened and their positive interactions will increase in frequency and duration, building a critical protective factor against the harmful effects of toxic shock.
The strengthened bonding will promote stable parent-child relationships and contribute to the child’s healthy social and emotional development. Parents will learn to nurture growth and development in their children, and the program will provide opportunities for parents to learn with and from each other. Parents will learn communication and constructive discipline skills and to respond positively to their child’s needs.
Waltham Partnership for Youth will manage all aspects of the program, including financial oversight, and will serve as the liaison between partners. The Freedman Center for Child Development will provide facilitators, curriculum planning, material design, session delivery, evaluation, and supervision by an MSPP administrator. Home Suites Inn will provide a program space, assist with recruitment of families, and provide ongoing support.
Non-Competitive Grants to Cities and Towns 2013-2104
CHNA 18 awarded each city or town in the CHNA a one-time non-competitive grant in the amount of $1,000 to address any health issue or problem. Towns must apply through their local health department or board of health although another organization may be the recipient of the funding. Applications were accepted on a rolling basis through May 2014. The application can be found by clicking HERE.
Cities and Towns that applied for and received funds r:
Wellesley Health Department-Question, Persuade and Refer (QPR) suicide prevention workshop; Healthy Cooking for One or Two course for seniors. WHD would like to offer a QPR training to Wellesley school faculty, administration, nursing and health staff, coaches and general staff. The CHNA 18 grant funds would be used to pay for the training and instructor. Objectives include increasing awareness of the school based attendees, and providing tools to aid someone in crisis.
The CHNA 18 grant funds will also be used to offer another Healthy Cooking for One or Two course for older adults. We will collaborate with the Council on Aging in the development and promotion of the course. The funds will cover the instructor’s fee. WHD will provide funds for the food. Objectives include bringing older adults together to enhance their social network (decreasing social isolation and loneliness), while they learn how to prepare healthy fare. Our ultimate goal is to build a community of people who would like to share healthy recipes and even engage in a cooking club. We will explore a connection with the local Farmer’s Market.
Brookline- Hoarding Task Force: The proposed project is to create two informational pamphlets about hoarding disorder. One of the pamphlets would be geared towards landlords dealing with tenants that are hoarders. This would be called Hoarding Prevention and Mediation Suggestions for Condominium Associations and Landlords. This pamphlet would supply landlords and condominium associations with information about what hoarding is, how they can identify it, and what measures they can take to remedy the hoarding situation in their buildings. The second pamphlet would be geared towards people who are hoarders or families of hoarders. This pamphlet would be called Chronic Clutter Management and Prevention. The information in this pamphlet would help the hoarder, or a family member of someone who hoards identify whether or not they have a problem, what the problem is, and steps that they can take to begin to address their hoarding behavior. It will also include resources that they can use to get further assistance.
The benefits of these educational interventions are several fold. First, landlords and condominium association members will gain valuable information to help them understand and address serious and seemingly intractable problems. Also, persons who hoard and their family members will know they are not alone; that there are many others who suffer from this condition. Most importantly, they will learn that the situation is far from hopeless. There is help and treatment strategies that are successful. Finally, the work of our hoarding task force will be highlighted and contact information will be provided.
Needham:-SALSA SALSA- Students Advocating for Life Without Substance Abuse – was a pilot program in Needham for the school year 2012-2013. The group was created as an off-shoot of the RADD Club (Rockets Against Destructive Decisions) which shares the mission of the worldwide student leadership group, Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD). In its pilot year, the SALSA program was funded through a Needham Education Foundation grant. Overall, 15 high school students were trained and became a part of the SALSA pilot program. With the aid of the CHNA 18 non-competitive grant, we hope to continue the SALSA program into the 2013-2014 school year.
Newton-Summer Safety The proposed project for which this funding will be used is will be a dual purpose project focusing on sun safety and prevention of tick‐and‐mosquito‐borne illness. We plan to introduce and implement this project during the summer months of June, July and August, 2014. The program will be a fun, age appropriate informational campaign presented at summer camps, farmer’s markets, employees, the Newton Senior Center and Newton Free Library, and via the department’s usual social media and traditional media outreach. The public will be given information about sun safety and skin protection; including tips about sunscreen application and frequency of use, risks of sun exposure and skin damage and long term effects of sun damage on the skin. We will also be giving education and resources to the public about tick‐and‐mosquito‐borne illnesses with a focus on protection and prevention through the use of DEET containing bug repellent, wearing long sleeves and pants, avoiding outdoor activity during certain hours, how to check for ticks on the body and safe tick removal. The information will be presented in two ways – interactive presentations or a health fair‐style booth. The program will also include outreach to organizers of groups using outdoor facilities during the summer such as little league. The public health nurse and the public health program specialist will implement the program. Some of the funding ($250) will be used for printed materials and signs. We will al
Dedham-Brochure addressing prescription drug abuse
The Dedham Board of Health is actively working with the Dedham Coalition for Drug and Alcohol Awareness to address the issue of opioid abuse and addiction within the town. In addition to serving many other areas of the community, the Board of Health also issues an assortment of permits and inspects and enforces appropriate codes in various types of establishments. Their public health mission is to prevent, promote, and protect.
An informational brochure addressing prescription drug/opioid abuse will be developed, printed, and mailed out to Dedham residents. This brochure will include an explanation of what opioids are, important relevant facts, signs of abuse and overdose, ways to safely dispose of unwanted medication, how to obtain training to administer Narcan, and treatment facilities or support groups that exist in the area. _ Waltham-Healthy Waltham/PTO Wellness Committee Healthy Waltham has acted as a convener and broker for many health promotion activities that happen in Waltham. In this role, we convened a PTO Wellness Committee with membership composed of parents from the Parent Teacher Organizations (PTO’s) of all 6 of Waltham’s public elementary schools. Healthy Waltham’s role has been pivotal to the development and convening of the PTO Wellness Committee so far, but they have now developed a leadership team of parent volunteers who are poised to take on more leadership and allow Healthy Waltham to move from being a key convener to simply an active participant. We would use funds from CHNA 18 to meet with the PTO leadership team to help them plan for next year, and to convene two meetings of the team next year. This would allow a smooth transition in leadership and the placement of the wellness team in the hands of parents and teachers, which is both more sustainable and better-integrated into the fabric of Waltham’s systems
2010-2013: Grants for Forging New Partnerships
Springwell Elder Services/Newton Wellesley Hospital Springwell partnered with Newton Wellesley Hospital to implement the region's first care transitions intervention program to improve seniors' transitions home from the hospital and follow-up communication with their doctors. Click HERE to read the final report for this project for a more detailed description of what was accomplished.
Brookline Department of Public Health: The BDPH program linked improvements in public health to the town’s major climate change initiative, Brookline 2010. Spearheaded by town elected officials, Brookline 2010 was a three year project whose goal was to reduce Brookline’s carbon footprint, adapting scientific tools to measure and document the results. BDPH created a new partnership with Brookline 2010 to plan, implement and evaluate educational programs and other activities designed to reduce the carbon footprint among Brookline households while also improving public health. BDPH targeted its work primarily in the areas of nutrition and physical activity. Click HERE to read more about this project and what was accomplished.
Pictures from various Brookline events:
Jewish Family and Children's Services/Healthy Waltham/Waltham Fields Community FarmThis project addressed limited access to healthy food for the individuals and families particularly at risk for poor nutritional health living on low incomes in the City of Waltham. Project implementation will include: a.) collaboration building between JF&CS, WFCF, and HW; b.) direct service; and c.) food provision. Ways to reach residents of Waltham with direct service include existing interactive nutrition groups, community-wide events, and online nutrition information and recipes. All services were based on teaching how to eat healthy on a limited food budget through healthy low-cost meal ideas, food budgeting practice, and local produce. Click HERE to learn more about this project and what was accomplished.