June 24, 2022- One week after the form to nominate community based projects to receive support from the Health Equity Fund (HEF) launched, Richmond and Henrico Health Districts (RHHD) has received fifty-one nominations. RHHD continues to encourage community members and organizations to nominate grassroots projects aimed at reducing health disparities in Richmond’s communities at rhhd.gov/hef through July 28, 2022.
In October 2021, Richmond City Council voted to establish a first-ever Health Equity Fund (HEF) in the City of Richmond through an initial investment of $5 million from federal American Rescue Plan Act funds. Earlier this month, Richmond and Henrico Health Districts (RHHD) announced that $230,000 in initial investments were granted to community organizations to address health disparities.
The short nomination form alerts RHHD to innovative, community-based projects aimed at reducing health disparities. After a project is nominated, RHHD reaches out to the main point of contact to gather more information about the project. The projects will then be reviewed by RHHD’s community advisory committee (CAC), which is a group of people who have relevant professional or personal experiences with health disparities. Selected projects then work with RHHD to develop work and funding plans.
Nominees should have capacity to engage in new projects or expand existing work to better promote health equity and racial justice and address health disparities in Richmond. The disparity areas of focus defined by the City Administration and City Council for the HEF include: COVID-19, mental health, substance use and recovery, maternal child health, food access and security, access to care and health education, and underlying conditions.
“It’s really exciting for us to see this process come to life and to see nominations roll in,” says Hannah Quigley, Food Access Specialist. “We’ve tried to be intentional in creating a simple funding process that centers racial equity and community voices in every step of the process… we’ve seen some great projects get nominated and are continuing to invite community members to help us learn about all the good work happening in our communities.”
RHHD will continue to notify the public of future rounds of nominations and funding, which will occur through 2024.