Emerging Needs, Responsive Funding
Timeliness matters, especially for children living under adverse social and economic circumstances. That’s why agility fuels our mindset and actions in pursuit of healthy foundations for children. Through Special Projects, we address complicated health equity issues quickly and creatively as funding and opportunities coincide. It’s as much about collaborating with our community partners to identify a need not met through our current programs as it is about procuring funding for a potential solution. As the needs and funding evolve, so do our methods to address the adverse social determinants of health through care, outreach, research, and education.
Special Projects that Build Healthy Foundations for Children
- Provide Children Swimsuits to Use at their Local Public Swimming Pool.
Living in close proximity to a public swimming pool can be one access barrier some children encounter, but it’s not the only one. The use of public swimming pools requires swimwear, so owning a swimsuit or swim diapers can be another hurdle to overcome. In 2019, Suit Up for Summer raised more than $11,000 to purchase 400 bathing suits, 260 pairs of flip flops, 175 pairs of goggles, 140 towels, and 30 packs of swim diapers so children could experience the physical and mental health benefits of their local Parks & Rec community pool.
- Supply Food and Art Kits to Refugee and Immigrant Families without a Social Safety Net.
During the early days of COVID-19, we worked with partner organizations to distribute free, emergency food to 700 immigrant families. We identified these families as underserved and overlooked by other government programs due to their immigration status. We also provided art kits for the children each week, helping them cope with mental health issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder and anxiety.
- Offer an Educational Scald-Burn Prevention Program to Reduce the Risk of Injuries in Children.
Children from families living at or below the poverty line disproportionately suffer from long-term impacts of scald burns. Education can be a preventative measure that works to reduce the number and severity of scald injuries. The Scald-Free Philly program included a one-hour class where caregivers received simple, preventative measures they could implement at home to reduce the risk of common scald injuries. After attending, caregivers received tools, such as temperature safety ducks and child safety gates, that were demonstrated during the class.