There are many factors that affect our health, and most are outside the doctor’s office and in our communities. That’s right: where we live has an impact on our health. The more we understand the connection between health and community, the more opportunities we have to improve it.
Of course, building a healthier community is a complex challenge that requires more than a single change. It takes a diverse group of organizations working together in a coordinated and structured way to amplify impact, increase efficiencies, and drive alignment and systemic reform. In other words, it takes a collective approach.
That’s why, over the last year, we’ve held community forums and had discussions with leaders in Denver and St. Louis that affirmed this connection between health and the community, and the need for creative, collaborative solutions.
So GSK is launching a new charitable grant program—GSK IMPACT Grants*—to better understand how we can all work together to build healthier communities. We’ll invest in a well-established network of organizations in Metropolitan Denver and Greater St. Louis that are focused on improving community factors and helping a targeted population of disadvantaged youth live healthier lives.
Why these two areas? Metropolitan Denver and Greater St. Louis— two geographically and demographically diverse regions—will provide insights about a broad set of community health challenges and opportunities. Denver, one of the healthiest cities in the US, is now facing new challenges such as childhood obesity. St. Louis—where GSK has manufacturing operations—overall improvements in health status were achieved over the past 10 years, but race- and gender-based disparities persist.
Our intent is to broaden, deepen, and/or build the capacity of these promising programs while also increasing the ability of the network to have greater collective impact.
We invite you to learn more about this new pilot grant program and, if you or someone you know works with an organization in Denver or St. Louis that meets these criteria, consider applying for a GSK IMPACT Grant. And join the conference call Wednesday, November 6 at 3pm ET when we will discuss the goals of the grant as well as eligibility criteria, rules, and conditions. Register for conference call now.
*Our focus on healthy communities has helped inform not only the GSK IMPACT Grants – this new pilot charitable grant program in Metropolitan Denver and Greater St. Louis, but also the redesign of our IMPACT Awards – our annual awards program in Greater Philadelphia Region and the Research Triangle Park and surrounding area in North Carolina. The Lutheran Social Mission Society, pictured above, is a great example of the types of organizations that build healthier communities.