Senior Transporation Connection of Cuyahoga County
The Foundation has been an advocate and funder of efforts to launch a countywide system of senior transportation and to inform federal policymakers on the importance of transportation to a senior's ability to remain at home in the community and deter institutionalization for as long as possible. Led by the County Planning Commission, and with additional funding assistance from United Way and other grantmakers, the Senior Transportation Connection of Cuyahoga County provides a system that is safe, efficient, affordable and sustainable to serve the transportation needs of seniors countywide.
ChildSight® Video (1999 - 2009)
Access to High-Quality Care: ChildSight® in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District
ChildSight® provides free vision screenings and free quality eyeglasses, as needed, to middle school students in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, as well as students in the East Cleveland Public Schools. With puberty comes changes in eyesight, and urban children do not get to the eye doctor on a routine basis. Kids who can't see the blackboard can't learn. ChildSight® provides these services on-site, in-school.
Health of the Urban Community
In the tradition of The Mt. Sinai Medical Center, the Foundation is committed to improving the health of Greater Cleveland's most vulnerable individuals and families. To achieve impact in this area, scale is a significant factor.
The Foundation seeks to support especially those projects focusing on health promotion and disease prevention that have the potential to access large populations through existing community infrastructure. To optimize impact in large populations, partnering with both public and private funding sources may be appropriate and necessary.
Of particular interest are proposals focusing on primary prevention and early intervention.
Two-Generational Early Intervention
Many children in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County experience trauma. Known clinically as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), these traumas predict short-term negative emotional, mental, and physical health outcomes, as well as ill health well into adulthood. Mt. Sinai has partnered with OhioGuidestone to pilot universal ACEs screening among pediatric patients at Northeast Ohio Neighborhood Health Services, Inc. (NEON) and create new opportunities to connect children and families to evidence-based services that mitigate the long-term effects of trauma. In 2019, these efforts expanded to the UH Rainbow Center for Women and Children and now include trauma screening and services for pregnant women.
Moving Upstream: Food as Medicine
For many low-income individuals and families in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County, food insecurity and resulting poor nutrition contribute to chronic health conditions, such as diabetes and hypertension. Mt. Sinai has supported the Greater Cleveland Food Bank in building the capacity to expand its focus from combating hunger to improving population health as a part of its new strategic vision. Through the hire of a Senior Nutrition Manager, the Food Bank has fostered new and existing partnerships with health care institutions and planned various programs, such as hospital-based food pantries and medically tailored meals, to address nutrition-related health challenges of its clients.
Primary Prevention and Maternal/Infant Health
Rates of preterm birth and infant mortality in Cuyahoga County are significantly higher than the national average, with striking disparities among African-American mothers. The Nurse Family Partnership (NFP) is an evidence-based home visitation program conducted by Registered Nurses to promote healthy child development and improve parenting skills among low-income, first-time mothers. Mt. Sinai has partnered with MetroHealth to expand NFP service delivery to Cleveland with a pilot implementation and evaluation program. These efforts have facilitated widespread buy-in among state and local government, philanthropy, health care providers, and community stakeholders.
Coalition Building to Create Healthier Environments
Helping children develop healthy habits surrounding eating and active living plays a role in combating childhood obesity. Mt. Sinai has partnered with the Cuyahoga County Board of Health (CCBH) to build the Early Ages Health Stages Coalition—which convenes early childhood education (ECE) providers, social service agencies, health care institutions, community organizations, families, and businesses to make policy, systems, and environment changes in early childhood care and education. By enabling coalition members to build partnerships, share best practices, and implement shared strategic goals, CCBH has helped drive a community-wide agenda towards healthy early learning environments.
Trauma-Informed Care and Family Support
Children facing homelessness and housing insecurity experience trauma, referred to as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), that negatively impacts emotional, behavioral, mental, and physical health in both childhood and adulthood. Mt. Sinai has partnered with the YWCA Greater Cleveland to provide direct services to homeless children and families at-risk for trauma through its Early Learning Center (ELC). This early intervention provides high-quality childcare, case management, linkages to health care services, and parent engagement in order to increase school readiness, resiliency, and family self-sufficiency.