May 2022

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CSHF Adds Housing to its Funding Focus Areas

Colorado Springs Health Foundation’s board recently decided to add Transitional and Permanent Affordable Housing to its funding focus areas.  Why?

  • Housing is intrinsically linked to health;
  • There is a clear and increasing shortage of safe, affordable housing in the Pikes Peak region;
  • Affordable housing has been identified as one of the top community issues.

This means that Colorado Springs Health Foundation’s current funding focus areas are:

  • Expand access to healthcare for those in greatest need
  • Prevent suicide
  • Cultivate healthy environments in high-need or underserved communities, specifically and exclusively:
    • Efforts that encourage greater physical activity
    • Efforts that increase access to healthy, affordable food
    • Efforts that increase or retain transitional or permanent affordable housing
  • Prevent or heal trauma

Details are in the process of being developed, and will be shared within the next few months.  For an excellent literature review of how housing relates to health, check out this 2018 article from Health Affairs.


CSHF Awards $4.5M in Grants through its 2022 Main Funding Opportunity

In mid-March, the Foundation awarded $4.5M via 67 grants.  Some of these were multi-year awards. Here are some facts about the funding cycle:

  • Overall
    • Total Awarded: $4.5M via 67 grants
    • Award rate: 86%
    • Declination rate: 14%
    • Smallest grant: $5K
    • Largest grant: $350K (over two years) or $300K in a single year
  • Grant awards by funding focus area (calculated in terms of number of grants, not grant $):
    • Access to healthcare: 33 grants or 49%
    • Suicide prevention: 1 grant or 1.5%
    • Healthy environments: 18 grants or 27%
    • Prevent/Heal trauma: 15 grants or 22%
  • Grant awards by grant type (calculated in terms of number of grants, not grant $):
    • General Operating: 25 grants or 37%. Average grant: $31.3K
    • Program/Project: 39 grants or 58%. Average grant: $78.8K
    • Capital: 3 grants or 4%. Average grant: $215.7K
  • Grant awards broken out by geographic interest area or key community health issue:
        • Behavioral Health (Mental Health or Substance Use Disorder or Suicide Prevention): 15 grants totaling $1.2M (27%)
        • Rural (includes Teller County and Eastern El Paso County): 6 grants totaling $140,242  (3%)
        • Southeast Colorado Springs: 9 grants totaling $965K (21%)

What We’re Reading, Watching or Listening to Now:

New York Times, “A Grim, Long-Hidden Truth Emerges in Art: Native American Enslavement

New York Times, “In a Time of Crisis, a City Fights Isolation

New York Times, “The Bill for my Homelessness was $54,000”

New York Times, “Notes from the End of a Very Long Life

New York Times Magazine, “The Man Who Fought Homelessness and Won (Sort of)

Andrea Elliot’s book Invisible Child

Arthur C. Brooks article “How to Want Less”  in The Atlantic

Krista Tippet’s On Being podcast featuring Trabian Shorters “A Cognitive Skill to Magnify Humanity

The Hidden Brain podcast on grief/resilience featuring Lucy Hone:  ”Healing Your Heart

Derek Thompson’s article “Why American Teens are so Sad” in The Atlantic

Andrew Solomon’s article “The Mystifying Rise of Youth Suicide” in The New Yorker.

Matt Richtel’s series on the teen mental health crisis.  Here’s the first article in the series, and we particularly recommend the 14 minute video at the top of the article. It’s a great overview of the science behind this crisis and why it is different now.

A great book Systems Thinking for Social Change  by David Peter Stroh. And if you don’t have time for a book but are interested in learning why we need to think at the system level, check out these two short videos:

And for remarkable beauty, courtesy of Mother Nature, The New York Times “Gazing at the Black Sun: The Transfixing Beauty of Starling Murmerations”  (and make sure you actually watch the videos)


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