Thriving Community

With an overall objective to improve the social and economic conditions that promote physical, mental and emotional well-being, we seek to foster a thriving South Florida by creating awareness about the intersection of community development and health, with a special focus on housing and economic prosperity issues.

THE BACKGROUND

SOCIAL DETERMINANTS OF HEALTH

Having access to affordable, safe and stable housing, nutritious food, a steady job, a good education and safe streets are all critical predictors of a person’s and a community’s health.

 

REGIONAL CHALLENGES

South Florida faces unique challenges. It has been ranked as one of the most unequal and unaffordable and metropolitan areas in the United States, with 49 percent of Miami-Dade’s and 44 percent of Broward’s households spending more than 30 percent of their monthly income on housing alone. 

 

PROSPERITY GAP 

Such inequity has resulted in a prosperity gap that excludes too many residents from the region’s economic upswing. The gap is certain to be exacerbated with the recent COVID19 pandemic, which caused disproportionately negative impacts and hardship on Black and Hispanic residents and already vulnerable communities.

THE HEALTH CONNECTION
  • It’s widely understood that affordable housing serves as the foundation for building healthy, resilient communities. Indeed, it’s been referred to as “the first vaccine.” 
  • While other basic needs—like access to nutritious foods, medication, education, jobs, childcare and social connections—are critical, health interventions are not effective unless people have access to a safe, stable and affordable home. 
  • With improved economic opportunities and higher incomes—through better paying and steady jobs as well as small business ownership—people and communities are better able to afford basic needs like housing, utilities, transportation, nutritious foods, medication, childcare, education costs, social connections and can contribute to savings that help accumulate generational wealth. 
OUR STRATEGIES

One of our key priorities is to continue to bring awareness to and increase understanding of the social determinants of health—the concept that a community’s social and economic conditions impact a person’s ability to lead a healthy life. As such, we will support projects that:

  • Help fund, create or protect affordable housing resources across the region. 
  • Through our involvement with the South Florida Anchor Alliance, we are working to increase the number of regional anchor institutions that align their internal practices and resources to scale their efforts to build an inclusive local economy. 
OUR INTEREST AREAS
In relation to affordable housing, we are interested in projects that:

  • Increase the understanding of the connection between housing and health.
  • Strengthen the capacity of local residents and community-based organizations to advocate for improved housing policies.
  • Pilot projects that couple health and housing, inclusive of supportive services models.
  • Support policy and advocacy activities that help fund, create, or protect affordable housing resources across our region.

In relation to our work with anchor institutions, we will fund projects implemented through the South Florida Anchor Alliance, for which membership and participation in work group meetings is required. Project objectives must align with the Alliance’s official Blueprint. We will support projects that:

  • Increase the number of regional institutions aligning internal practices and resources that contribute to an inclusive local economy.
  • Increase community benefit investments in community wealth building.
  • Support workforce pipeline programs targeting unemployed or under-employed individuals and communities.

For more information on these and other efforts to foster a thriving community in South Florida, please contact Vice President of Operations and Strategy Janisse Schoepp.

Our Impact Stories

We convened a power-house group of local institutions to help build a healthier local economy for all. 

More Info