$103 Million awarded through Community Transformation Grants
Today, The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded funding for the Community Transformation Grants, providing over $100 million to 61 communities across the United States. Created by the Affordable Care Act, these grants are aimed at helping communities implement projects proven to reduce chronic disease, violence and injury, and improve mental health and equity.
Across the country, momentum is building as more communities are emphasizing the importance of supporting health in the first place, before our nation’s citizens are sick or injured. A new paradigm of health is beginning to emerge – one that promotes wellness, health and equity alongside medical care and treatment. Community Transformation Grants are rising as one of the bright spots for this approach to health, equity and community prevention. At the same time, vital prevention initiatives promoting health, preventing violence and building equity are being targeted for cuts [see sidebar], and many communities are still waiting for funds.
California illustrates this case perfectly. California will receive over $22 million in funding, largely due to the fact that the state is already accomplishing what the federal government hopes to build in the rest of the country, with natural leaders, community prevention efforts, and engagement already in place and poised to leverage federal funding. Yet even in California, where so much has been accomplished, there is greater need for investment and many communities who need but didn’t receive funding. The same is true in every state across the country.
Community Transformation Grants represent an enormous investment and commitment to health and community prevention, but more federal funding is still needed (and was recommended for appropriation by the Senate HELP Committee) to ensure that all communities have access to safe, equitable health outcomes. In the next round of allocations, communities who have already applied for and had their applications approved but not funded, should be funded quickly and without further re-application; the the process should continue to look to increase and expand resources where need is greatest.
Congratulations to all of the funded communities, and to the investment you have begun in the health and vitality of your communities. We will continue to work with all of our partners to bring the same opportunities and resources to all of our communities.