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The California Wellness Foundation announced today that it has recently committed more than $7 million in funding under its Advancing Wellness grants program.

November 20, 2017

David Littlefield
The California Wellness Foundation
(818) 702-1925

Cal Wellness Announces More than $7 Million in Grants

Fire relief and support for immigrants and foster youth among top health priorities

The California Wellness Foundation announced today that it has recently committed more than $7 million in funding under its Advancing Wellness grants program. High on the list of priorities was helping Californians recover from the October fires in Santa Rosa and the surrounding areas through grants to Solano Community Foundation and Community Foundation of Napa Valley. The money was earmarked for temporary shelter, food, medical care, mental health services, emergency child care, transportation, referrals, case management, legal services and other human services for those affected by the fires.

“In times of trauma, health suffers,” said Fatima Angeles, vice president of programs. “And recovering from the devastation of the fires in Northern California will be a years-long process. The community foundations in Napa and Solano are in the best position to assess the needs of residents and offer help, and we are eager to support their efforts.”

Cal Wellness also made a significant grant to Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees to strengthen the capacity of local and regional efforts to support the health and well-being of immigrants as part of the Foundation’s Advance and Defend campaign. A portion of the grant has been used as a matching gift to generate support for the UndocuFund, which is funding direct fire-relief services for undocumented immigrants in Sonoma County.

While the fires have left many people without homes for the first time, homelessness is not a new problem for California — and living on the streets is especially difficult for women. The Downtown Women’s Center in Los Angeles completed a 2016 needs assessment showing that 90% of homeless women on Skid Row identify as survivors of trauma, and more than 55% reported their physical health as “poor” or “fair.”  To mark Cal Wellness’ relocation of its headquarters to downtown Los Angeles in September, a grant was made to the Downtown Women’s Center, a new neighbor of the Foundation, to provide health and supportive services, case management and permanent supportive housing to homeless women in Los Angeles over the next two years.

Homeless young people, particularly foster youth, also face unique challenges. With a grant from Cal Wellness, John Burton Advocates for Youth will provide technical assistance to supportive housing programs so that they can in turn provide academic case management and coaching, build relationships with colleges, and help youth manage the financial aid system and the work-school balance.

A complete list of Cal Wellness’ recent grants can be found here.

The California Wellness Foundation is celebrating 25 years as a private, independent foundation with a mission to advance wellness for all Californians by making grants for health promotion, wellness education and disease prevention. Since its founding in 1992, Cal Wellness has awarded more than $991 million in charitable contributions, which include matching gifts, and 8,849 grants.

Cal Wellness’ Advancing Wellness grants program is designed to promote equity through advocacy and access. The grantmaking focuses on three interconnected portfolios: Bridging the Gaps in Access and Quality Care; Promoting Healthy and Safe Neighborhoods; and Expanding Education and Employment Pathways. The program also includes the Opportunity Fund to support innovation in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors.

Our Work

  • We use our resources to advance our mission through grantmaking, investments, sharing our learning and lifting our voice.
  • We fund direct services that address the urgent needs people are facing in their communities, particularly the needs of low-income individuals, people of color, youth and residents of rural areas.
  • We recognize, encourage and strengthen leaders to be powerful agents of change.
  • We support advocacy and civic engagement so that communities can build power and create public policies that reflect their vision, will and needs.
  • We trust and invest in nonprofit organizations so that they can operate at full capacity.
  • We partner with community-led organizations, philanthropic organizations, businesses, government and individuals who want to improve health and wellness for Californians.

Our Mission

To protect and improve the health and wellness of the people of California by increasing access to health care, quality education, good jobs, healthy environments and safe neighborhoods.

The California Wellness Foundation • City National Plaza, 515 S. Flower Street, Suite 1100 • Los Angeles, CA, 90071 • Tel: (818)­ 702–1900

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