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Impact Award for Area Consumer Health Foundation

The Consumer Health Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based group that aims to help poor and minority communities, has won a prestigious Impact Award from the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy. (CHF)
The Consumer Health Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based group that aims to help poor and minority communities, has won a prestigious Impact Award from the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy. (CHF)
March 14, 2016

RICHMOND, Va. - A health-care policy foundation aiming to help poor and minority communities in the region has won a prestigious Impact Award.

The Consumer Health Foundation works on health and racial equity in the District of Columbia, northern Virginia and parts of Maryland. The National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy chose to honor the foundation for the smart way it directs its programs and investments.

Foundation president and chief executive Yanique Redwood said they consciously chose to target the root causes of health disparities.

"When people think health, they think health care, but health care's just a really tiny piece of how a person or a group of people become healthy and stay healthy," she said. "We made some decisions to go what we call 'upstream.' "

This is the fourth year of the Impact Awards, honoring foundations that make grants to encourage diversity and empowerment of marginalized communities. This year's other winners are the Patagonia Foundation, the Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund, and the Sandler Foundation.

NCRP field director Jeanné Isler said they choose groups that demonstrate diversity both in the organization and in their work. Consumer Health Foundation impressed them, she said, because it gives grants to organizations such as the Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis. The Institute focuses on health, economic and budget policies in a way that compliments groups that work in the trenches addressing poverty.

"Things like food pantries or tutoring programs," she said, "and many foundations don't realize that a strong compliment to funding those types of groups is to fund advocacy groups, community organizing groups and other groups that look at policy change as well."

Isler said she hopes the Impact Award winners will serve as an example for other foundations. The awards will be given out at a ceremony in Minneapolis during the first week of May.

More information is online at ncrp.org and consumerhealthfdn.org.

Dan Heyman, Public News Service - VA