The St. Joseph Community Health Foundation in Fort Wayne has awarded nearly $630,000 in grants to nearly three dozen local nonprofits and grassroots organizations. The foundation says the funding will support residents in four impact areas: Refugees & Immigrants, Food Insecurity & Nutrition, Prenatal & Infant Care and Access to Health & Wellness.
The funding is the second round of grants awarded by the foundation in 2022, bringing the year’s total funding to more than $1.3 million.
“This year’s record-setting inflation levels have placed low-income families in impossible situations, often having to choose between paying for food, medications and rent,” St. Joe Foundation Executive Director Meg Distler said in written remarks. “These grants help non-profits ease the burdens on some of our community’s most vulnerable residents and build pathways for them to have better futures.”
The grant recipients include:
- A Hope Center: For support of STI testing, treatment, and education and for prenatal education to support clients’ healthy pregnancies.
- A Mother’s Hope: To support counseling services for shelter residents.
- Associated Churches of Fort Wayne and Allen County: To support A Baby’s Closet, which provides prenatal and infant care items to low-income families, and for Journey Beside Mothers, a program offering peer mentoring and support for new mothers.
- Blessings In A Backpack: For the Weekend Food Program, which provides six prepackaged food sets each weekend throughout the school year to students who qualify for the Free and Reduced Lunch Program at local schools.
- Bridge of Grace Compassionate Ministry Center: For programs that aim to improve spiritual, physical and emotional health in southeast Fort Wayne neighborhoods.
- Building a Stronger Family: To support services that address the well-being of families living in southeast Fort Wayne.
- Cancer Services of Northeast Indiana: To provide increased access to services for low-income residents with cancer living in southeast Fort Wayne.
- Center for Nonviolence, Inc.: For the Access to Healthcare for Refugee, Immigrant, & BIPOC Populations Program, which provides education, case management, medical translation and other related services to BIPOC and non-English-speaking populations.
- Clinica Madre de Dios, Inc.: To conduct health screenings and health education at Southside Farmers Market.
- Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana, Inc.: For the purchase of equipment to blanch and freeze fresh produce for distribution, and support of hunger relief services.
- Faith Lutheran Church: For purchase of produce and low-fat proteins for the Faith and Light Food Pantry operating in southeast Fort Wayne.
- Four:10 Ministries: To support the services of a trauma therapist working with women in the adult entertainment industry.
- Headwaters Counseling: To provide high-quality training for staff who offer mental health services to low-income clients.
- Healthier Moms and Babies: To support services that help prevent infant mortality and improve the outcomes of pregnancies.
- GiveHear: For the addition of a second audio suite for the Fort Wayne Hearing Healthcare Clinic serving vulnerable populations.
- Heart of the City Mission Foundation: For the Food Rescue program, which addresses food insecurity among at-risk populations by rescuing food from area restaurants and distributing it throughout central Fort Wayne.
- Heartland Communities: To support establishment of a fresh produce stall at Electric Works’ Union Street Market, which will offer discounts to customers paying with SNAP.
- International House, Inc.: For a medical liaison/social worker to help newly arriving Afghan, Haitian and Ukrainian immigrants/parolees after their resettlement services end.
- Journey Birth and Wellness: For doula services to provide physical, emotional and educational support to pregnant women who cannot afford these services, as well as for medical interpretation training for doulas.
- Lutheran Social Services of Indiana: To support the health and wellness of teen parents and their children who participate in the Education Creates Hope and Opportunity (ECHO) Program.
- Matthew 25 Health and Care: To support nutrition education and/or medical interpretation services.
- McMillen Health: For the translation of Healthy Tomorrow App videos into Spanish.
- Neighborhood Health: For community health workers at the Ward Project, a new healthcare clinic to be built in southeast Fort Wayne.
- Purdue University Fort Wayne: For the PFW and Fort Wayne Community Schools Free Feminine Products in School Initiative.
- Pontiac Street Market: To support purchase of a point-of-sale system that will allow SNAP and WIC customers to purchase healthy foods at a discount.
- Super Shot, Inc.: For community immunization clinics and services.
- The Lutheran Foundation: For the hygiene pantry and interpretation services at CONNECT Allen County.
- The Salvation Army: To provide nutritious food and alleviate food insecurity through The Salvation Army’s food pantry.
- Women’s Care Center: For a new ultrasound machine and for operations at the new location on Lake Avenue.
- YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne: To support the Youth Advocacy initiative, in which Y staff help vulnerable youth access healthcare and other supports needed to assist them in creating a healthier life and a path to future success.
- YWCA Northeast Indiana: For access to quality, affordable healthcare for women in recovery, which includes clinical counseling, nutritious food and support for infants born while their moms are enrolled in the YWCA’s addiction recovery program.
The foundation says it also awarded $29,500 in grants of less than $5,000 to nine organizations.