During a ceremony on our Research Triangle Park campus in North Carolina, GSK and The Triangle Community Foundation recognized nine nonprofits who tackle pressing community health issues in the Triangle region. Each organization received a GSK IMPACT Award and $40,000 for the innovative work they do to improve community health.
Kidznotes, one of the 2013 GSK IMPACT Award winners, set the tone for the ceremony, literally. Attendees were greeted by beautiful classical music played by students from Kidznotes, where free classical music training is available for children in underserved communities.
You may wonder what classical music has to do with health. Well, a lot of factors affect our health outside our doctor’s office and beyond the power of our own individual choice. Community factors such as safety, education, the accessibility of healthy foods and recreational spaces, and the support of families and social networks, all contribute to our health. The more we understand the connection between our health and our community, the more opportunities we have to improve it.
Kidznotes provides educational enrichment in a safe and nurturing environment, which empowers children and helps them succeed in school. The more education someone has, the healthier they are likely to be.
The 2013 IMPACT Award winners understand the connection between health and our community, and have established programs that can be sustained and replicated. The winners are:
- Association for the Preservation of the Eno River Valley, Inc., which protects the nature, culture, and history of the Eno River basin
- The Center for Volunteer Caregiving, which provides volunteer services to seniors, family caregivers, and adults with disabilities
- Communities In Schools of Wake County, for surrounding students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life.
- Farmer Foodshare, Inc., which builds healthy communities by connecting people who grow food with people who need food
- Haven House, Inc., which strengthens youth and young adults through effective programs, advocacy, and community mobilization
- Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, for pioneering innovative, transformative solutions designed to end hunger
- Kidznotes, Inc., which transforms the lives of underserved children through classical, orchestral music training
- PLM Families Together, Inc., which moves families from homelessness to independence.
- Student U, for empowering students to develop the academic skills and personal well-being necessary to succeed in college and beyond.
A similar awards celebration was held on November 20 in Philadelphia.
Over the past 17 years, GSK has distributed nearly $7 million to nonprofits in Philadelphia and Research Triangle Park, NC. In addition, as part of the company’s national initiative to build healthier communities, GSK recently announced $500,000 GSK IMPACT grants in St. Louis, Missouri, and Denver, Colorado for innovative networks of nonprofit organizations working to help disadvantaged youth. Early next year we will announce the grantees, so watch this space!