Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Reed Encourages RI Organizations to Compete for $70 Million Health & Wellness Grants
WASHINGTON, DC – In an effort to improve wellness and promote healthy communities, U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) is encouraging eligible Rhode Island organizations to apply for a portion of $70 million in federal funding for community-based prevention initiatives. The goal is to reduce tobacco use, childhood obesity, and chronic illness such as heart disease and diabetes in at-risk communities.
Reed helped create and fund the Community Transformation Grants program as part of the Affordable Care Act, and now the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is making $70 million available in competitive grants to support communities with populations of up to 500,000 people in neighborhoods, school districts, villages, towns, cities, and counties.
Rhode Island received $1.29 million last year for statewide efforts supporting prevention activities proven to reduce health care costs and improve healthy behaviors. This round of competitive federal grants is targeted specifically for communities and organizations which serve a population of up to 500,000.
“Obesity, smoking, and chronic diseases are a costly, yet preventable, drain on society. Promoting things like healthy eating, exercise, and tobacco-free living helps address the root causes of poor health and reduces health care costs,” said Reed. “This is an opportunity for the state and non-profits to improve public health and help those most at-risk for chronic conditions. I encourage all eligible groups in Rhode Island to apply for these competitive Community Transformation Grants and put the money to good use.”
According to HHS, about 75 percent of health care costs in the United States can be attributed to chronic disease. The grants will help improve the health of communities with preventive programs that have shown positive outcomes.
Up to 50 CTG Small Communities Program awards will be made nationwide based on three strategic directions: tobacco-free living, healthy food systems, and active communities. Applicants specifically must demonstrate how they can improve their communities through increasing the availability of healthy foods and beverages; improving access to safe places for physical activity; and discouraging tobacco use and encouraging smoke-free environments.
Community coalitions and partnerships may submit applications to the CDC for one directive or all three, depending on organizational capacity.
Applications are due July 31, 2012.