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Eight Organizations Awarded Grants for First Policy Meets Practice Grantee Cohort

May 28, 2021

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Friday, May 28th, 2021

(Philadelphia, PA) – The Scattergood Foundation is pleased to announce its first round of grantees in its new grant initiative, Policy Meets Practice, which aims to align local grantmaking with its Think Bigger Do Good Policy Series. Each organization will receive a $20,000 grant and will participate in a Community of Practice where they can share best practices and challenges, build organizational capacity, and discuss policy solutions.

In its first grant cycle, Policy Meets Practice is supporting organizations that align work with the paper, COVID-19, Structural Racism, and Mental Health Inequities: Policy Implications for an Emerging Syndemic by Ruth S. Shim, MD, MPH and Steven M. Starks, MD, FAPA. This timely paper offers a discussion of how the COVID-19 pandemic interacts with social conditions created by structural racism and mental health inequities to cluster and produce worse outcomes for specific populations.

Recognizing the critical importance of addressing mental health inequities as a part of recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, the William Penn Foundation has matched the Scattergood Foundation’s investment with a grant of $80,000 toward the Policy Meets Practice initiative. With increased funding, the program was able to award a total of eight $20,000 grants. Grantees include:

All grantee organizations work with communities in Philadelphia, are led by a Black, Indigenous, and/or person of color and have an annual budget of $1million or less.

“The Think Bigger Do Good paper points to the necessity of investing in grassroots organizations working at the intersection of COVID-19, structural racism, and mental health inequities,” says Joe Pyle, President of the Scattergood Foundation. “We’re thrilled to be supporting these eight organizations who are doing work both on-the-ground and at the systemic level to make real impact.”

The goal of the Policy Meets Practice program is to invest in organizations that work directly with communities to address issues that relate to, inform, and advance the policy discussions outlined in the Think Bigger Do Good Policy Series. The series, which now has more than 20 papers, offers non-partisan and solution-oriented papers that address current behavioral health policy issues at the local, state, and federal levels.

Grantees were selected through a participatory process by a Grantmaking Group comprised of individuals who have been engaged in a wide range of on-the-ground community and behavioral health efforts. The Grantmaking Group evaluated applications and allocated grants dollars through a facilitated process. Inviting and elevating different perspectives into grantmaking decisions is critical to building a more equitable process.

“The grantmaking process was shaped by a group of committed individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences,” says Steven M. Starks, Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Houston College of Medicine, who co-authored COVID-19, Structural Racism, and Mental Health Inequities: Policy Implications for an Emerging Syndemic and participated as a Grantmaking Group member. “We worked collectively to apply the vision of equity set forth in the paper to real-world settings through support for our grantees and their dynamic community-driven programming.”

Grantees will also participate in a Community of Practice, which will begin this summer. The Community of Practice will provide grantees and stakeholders with the opportunity to share best practices and challenges and engage in dialogue about implications for public policy.

For more information, please contact Caitlin O’Brien, Director of Learning and Community Impact, at cobrien@scattergoodfoundation.org.

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The Scattergood Foundation believes major disruption is needed to build a stronger, more effective, compassionate, and inclusive health care system – one that improves well-being and quality of life as much as it treats illness and disease. At the Foundation, we THINK, DO, and SUPPORT in order to establish a new paradigm for behavioral health, which values the unique spark and basic dignity in every human.