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As of Jan. 1, grants awarded by the Community Health Endowment (CHE) are funding programs for young children, seniors, parents, refugees and immigrants, people experiencing mental illness, and people who depend on Lincoln’s health care safety net. The CHE board of trustees approved grants totaling $621,577 for year one and $1,006,253 over three years.

Among the projects funded is a unique partnership between Lincoln Literacy and the Bryan College of Health Sciences, which will pilot a program to prepare and train refugees and immigrants as Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) addressing the critical need for these workers in Lincoln’s health care system and providing economic stability and career opportunities for those served by the program.

New grants will:

• Recruit, prepare and mentor immigrants and refugees to study for CNA certification with the intent to raise family income for the participants and strengthen the health care delivery system. (Lincoln Literacy, $12,500 over one year.)

• Address CNA shortages and create career employment opportunities by providing CNA tuition assistance, mentoring/tutoring and education-related transportation to 32 refugees or immigrants. (Bryan College of Health Sciences, $17,600 over one year.)

• Reach diverse groups of older adults with fall prevention programs with a focus on individuals with hearing impairments and those who speak Arabic, Karen, Spanish and Vietnamese. (Aging Partners, $19,821 over one year.)

• Create a single point of entry into Circle of Security parenting classes in Lincoln/Lancaster County and provide six classes in Spanish and Arabic. (Nebraska Association for the Education of Young Children, $18,500 over one year.)

• Expand a 2017 CHE-funded pilot project that provides Common Sense Parenting classes that address behavioral problems and strengthen family relationships. The expansion will provide 13 parenting classes and serve 104 families. (Boys Town, $66,502 over three years.)

• Employ an additional alcohol and drug counselor to meet the growing need for no-cost substance abuse evaluations, counseling, outreach and education to the homeless. (Matt Talbot Kitchen and Outreach, $60,000 over three years.)

• Provide continuing support for the REAL Program, a peer support approach to increase access to services for individuals dealing with difficult issues (e.g. mental health, substance use, trauma, poverty) and prevent the need for higher levels of care such as a hospital or jail. (Lincoln Police Department, $110,250 over two years.)

• Provide continuing support to LNKTV Health, the city's source of health and wellness programming to the public through cable TV, the city’s website, YouTube and other social media. (City of Lincoln Communications, $20,000 over two years.)

• Employ a peer medical assistant in the Health 360 Clinic to increase medication adherence and help clients overcome barriers to recovery. (Lutheran Family Services, $30,000 over three years.)

• Continue to provide un- and under-insured individuals in Lancaster County access to medication, primary medical care, specialty medical care and interpretation/translation services. (Lancaster County Medical Society, $342,000 over three years.)

• Continue funding to connect at-risk families with young children to appropriate prevention services, improve family well-being and maternal mental health by strengthening protective factors, and improve child health through developmental assessments, connection to medical care and referral to early intervention services. (CEDARS Youth Services, $289,080 over one year.)

• Continue sponsorship of the 2019 and 2020 "Streets Alive!" festivals. (Partnership for a Healthy Lincoln, $20,000 over two years.)

The Community Health Endowment of Lincoln (CHE) is a municipal endowment dedicated to making Lincoln the healthiest community in the nation. To achieve this vision, CHE invests in health-related projects and programs and convenes the community around important health issues. Since its inception in 1998, CHE has returned more than $31 million to the community.

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