The Board of Trustees of the Green Tree Community Health Foundation announced a new name, Foundation for Health Equity (f4HE).
The Board of Trustees of the Green Tree Community Health Foundation announced a new name, Foundation for Health Equity (f4HE), as well as a new website (f4he.org), and strategic direction that renews the 16-year-old foundation’s commitment to the health and well-being of all people in Northwest Philadelphia.
“The average life expectancy of a neighbor in Germantown is 14 years shorter than a neighbor in Chestnut Hill. We do not accept this disparity,” said Al Thorell, Chair of the Foundation for Health Equity. “We have sharpened our strategy to address people’s pressing, daily health needs and influence the related social and structural systems that undermine the lives of too many in Northwest Philadelphia every day.”
A Long-Standing Concern for Health
Established in 2005 from the proceeds of the sale of Chestnut Hill Hospital, Green Tree Community Health Foundation (originally Chestnut Hill Healthcare Foundation) has historically carried out charitable activities in the hospital’s primary service area, spanning Northwest Philadelphia and Eastern Montgomery County.
During the last 16 years, the Foundation has made over 450 grants totaling $8.4 million to a wide array of community organizations, touching the lives of nearly 500,000 community members. While it has funded a variety of health-related organizations since its inception, in recent years it has concentrated its grantmaking in three categories: hunger and food insecurity; services for children; and services for the elderly.
“Our grantmaking has always focused on those who have historically struggled against inequitable access to health and health care,” said Bethany Flood, Executive Director of the Foundation for Health Equity. “We look forward to deepening this work with a broad range of community partners, who we will continue to rely on not only to deliver critically needed services but direct and guide our priorities.”
A New Strategic Direction
Noting changes in the community and the philanthropic landscape, the Foundation initiated a comprehensive strategic planning process in 2020. The effort was both accelerated and informed by the Covid-19 pandemic and its disproportionate impact on historically marginalized members of our community. With significant input from the people and organizations of Northwest Philadelphia, this process identified health equity as a primary concern for the foundation.
In response to the question – "How do we evolve to achieve greater health equity in a changing world?” – the new Foundation for Health Equity has articulated three, long-term strategies: Focused Grantmaking, to maximize the impact by concentrating on those Northwest Philadelphia communities facing the greatest barriers to the best health possible, including neighborhoods in the 19144, 19138, 19128, 19150, 19119, and 19118 zip codes; Intensive Community Engagement; Thoughtful Advocacy to support efforts to improve local, state, and national policies and programs.