Our Mission is to catalyze and support collaboration across the health and community development sectors, together working to improve low-income communities and the lives of people living in them.
We achieve our mission by connecting leaders and practitioners, curating resources and examples of what works, and building the knowledge base for cross-sector collaboration. Activities include: Network Commons live online discussions, customized trainings, MeasureUp, Jargon Buster, case studies, blog series and long form essays.
The Problem: Sectors Working in Silos
The nearly one-fifth of Americans who live in low-income communities have fewer opportunities to achieve healthy and rewarding lives. Many of the root causes of poverty and poor health are the same, and the community development and health sectors have worked for decades to address these challenges. However, these two sectors have often worked separately, even when serving the same places and people.
As a result, challenges such as siloed work streams, underestimated value and impact of work, inefficient use of resources, policy roadblocks and unrecognized investment opportunities persist.
The Solution: Coordinated Actions
By collaborating, the community development and public health sectors can have greater impact on the places and people they serve
Today we know that factors related to health, employment, education, housing, and neighborhoods are linked. Place matters and in many cases your zip code is more important than your genetic code in determining your health. We need coordinated action to build communities where all people can live healthy and rewarding lives.
We work to connect leaders and practitioners, provide capacity-building tools to make partnerships easier, and curate examples of what works to highlight cross-sector innovation and build the evidence base for collaboration.
By joining forces, the community developers and health professionals can have a more powerful impact in improving the health and opportunity of low-income neighborhoods.
The Network builds on the work of the Healthy Communities Initiative and RWJF’s Commission to Build a Healthier America. We were founded in recognition that a national network connecting sectors and promoting and enabling cross-sector collaboration was critical for ensuring that all people have the opportunity to live healthy and rewarding lives.
Built on the Federal Reserve System’s Healthy Communities Initiative
Our work builds on the Healthy Communities Initiative, a multi-year effort led by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to deepen cross-sector collaboration. This series of conferences at regional Federal Reserve Banks around the country bring leaders from across sectors together to examine how where people live, learn, work and play affects health. Over 20 Healthy Communities conferences have been convened around the country since 2010.
Informed by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Commission to Build a Healthier America
Our work is guided by the 2014 recommendations of the RWJF Commission to Build a Healthier America, which called for action to “support and speed the integration of finance, health and community development to revitalize neighborhoods and improve health.”