The third municipal Health Equity Fund in the country, Richmond’s HEF is dedicated to putting resources into community-based projects that disrupt and challenge the historic inequities in our populations’ health outcomes. After Boulder, CO and Louisville, KY, Richmond’s Health Equity Fund was established in the fall of 2021 with the leadership and support of Mayor Levar Stoney, the Richmond City Council, and Richmond and Henrico Health Districts (RHHD).
While RHHD and the City have worked with partners to advance health equity for decades, the Health Equity Fund was established through the Public Health Foundation at a unique and critical moment. The federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) allocated $155million to the City of Richmond in 2021 as a response to the then-ongoing COVID19 pandemic.
After rounds of public engagement and deliberation, Richmond committed to establishing the Health Equity Fund to create a dedicated pathway to invest in our communities’ leaders innovating and delivering critical programs and services that challenge the legacies of structural racism.
Lots of data and lots of listening.
HEF Funding priorities were established by layering ongoing, comprehensive data surveillance about all aspects of public health with the many community engagement processes that have taken place over years preceding and up through 2021. Sources include: