New Investments of the HEF

Sept 20, 2022- In October 2021, Richmond City Council voted to establish a first-ever Health Equity Fund (HEF) in the City of Richmond through an initial investment of $5 million from federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds. Today, Richmond and Henrico Health Districts (RHHD) are announcing that $332,000 of this fund will be granted to community organizations to address health disparities. This is the second cohort of community-based projects funded through the HEF; an initial investment of $230,000 was made earlier this summer.

 Mayor Levar Stoney with RHHD Health Director Dr. Elaine Perry thanks the community organizations for their ongoing work, being funded and expanded with HEF investment.

“We can reduce the racial health disparities we see in infant mortality, opioid overdoses, mental health, severe COVID-19 and chronic diseases with close collaboration between government, public health, and community organizations,” said Mayor Levar Stoney. “Our investments today in community-based solutions will help ensure we have the best people and tools available to achieve health equity in our great city.”

The organizations newly receiving HEF investments include Daily Planet Health Service, OAR of Richmond, Waymakers, Birth in Color, Healthy Heart Plus, and Urban Baby Beginnings. Combined, these organizations address access to healthcare particularly for those who are underinsured, uninsured, or without housing; supporting those reentering our communities following an incarceration; food access, particularly among Latino and immigrant populations; and access to doula services through workforce development for doulas and payment assistance for patients.

“We are thrilled to continue to support the investments into our community partners,” explains Dr. Elaine Perry, Director of RHHD. “Collaborative partnerships between public health officials and longstanding leaders and changemakers in our city allows us to employ innovative solutions to eradicating health and racial inequities that exist in Richmond and beyond.”

Applications for future HEF investments are currently being reviewed by the Community Advisory Committee (CAC), Richmond and Henrico Public Health Fund (RHPHF), and RHHD.

RHHD will continue to notify the public of future rounds of funding, which will occur through 2024.