Franciscan Health funds nonprofit organizations through the Social Impact Partnership Program | News

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – Many nonprofits in at-risk communities across the state of Indiana are struggling to provide adequate assistance to their residents. Now Franciscan Health is adding funds to a program designed to help these agencies.

This is the second year of the initiative, and administrators say they know it will be difficult to keep up with demand based on the level of interest in the first cycle of the system’s social impact partnership program. Last year. Applicants each have the opportunity to receive up to $9,750 to dedicate to the most needy populations.

Franciscan Health is investing $450,000 of the health system’s own money in the program. Qualified agencies should work with vulnerable populations in areas where Franciscan currently operates. Here, locally, Franciscan has identified Tippecanoe, Montgomery, and Jasper counties as areas that fall into this category.

Applications are open until May 31. Kate Hill-Johnson of Franciscan Health says that once the application window closes, applicants stay in their communities during the selection process.

“After the application process, we have committees, local committees, in all of our facilities that review applications from that location because they know the community best,” Hill-Johnson said. “We are reviewing them and assigning as many as we can. Our money is going very quickly.”

Hill-Johnson says that in last year’s application cycle, Franciscan was only able to fund about 62% of organizations that applied. She says she expects similar numbers this year.

Franciscan considers several factors during the selection process to determine a community’s level of need. These factors include food insecurity, mental well-being and housing assistance.

HomesteadCS is a housing counseling agency in Lafayette that works primarily with low to moderate income clients. The agency received a grant as part of the program’s first round of funding last year.

Executive Director Marie Morse says funding is essential to help fund the programs her agency offers to local residents.

“The vast majority of [the programs], probably 90% of them, we don’t charge because families need to save their money to pay for their housing, not to pay for the expertise of a nonprofit,” Morse said. “It really helps to have this funding from someone like the Franciscan Alliance to help pay my staff.”

Morse says she has already applied this year for another Franciscan grant. This year’s winners will be announced in mid-July. Learn more about this initiative on the main Social Impact Partnership program page here.

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