Lancaster Osteopathic Health Foundation (LOHF) awards $32,500 in grants to improve access to behavioral healthcare and mental wellbeing for Lancaster County children and teens. Another $67,500 in grants will be awarded this fall.
Lancaster Osteopathic Health Foundation (LOHF) today announced that three nonprofits in Lancaster County were awarded grants totaling $32,500 to improve access to behavioral healthcare for children and teens in Lancaster County. The funds were awarded to Samaritan Counseling Center, Lancaster Public Library, and SouthEast Lancaster Health Services.
LOHF will host an informational event for those interested in applying for the additional $67,500 in funding offered this fall. This Grants Info Session will be held Weds., June 14, 9:00 – 11:00 a.m., at Rogers & Associates, 2025 Lititz Pike, Lancaster. RSVP is requested online at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/lohf-grants-info-session-tickets-34890981866?aff=es2, or by phone, (717) 397-8722.
In a study of Lancaster County healthcare needs, LOHF confirmed that child and adolescent behavioral health services exist, but care systems are fragmented. This leaves families overwhelmed and confused, and providers without tools to adequately refer families for therapy, counseling, and treatment.
With this information as a foundation, LOHF has built a grant-funding approach that invests in practical solutions to make children’s behavioral health information and services more accessible. The Community Grant program targets support toward evidence-based programs advancing mental wellness of Lancaster County children and teens.
LOHF is positioned as a safety net, providing collaboration and resources for programs supporting parents, physicians and behavioral healthcare providers, nurses, and schools as they work together for the mental wellbeing of Lancaster County children and teens. Recognizing the current challenges of healthcare access—especially behavioral healthcare for children and teens—LOHF hopes to increase fundraising so that no child falls through the cracks. LOHF Community Grants represent 26 percent of LOHF’s annual program budget, with $100,000 total funds available annually thanks to LOHF’s endowment and generous donors.
Tax exempt community benefit organizations serving Lancaster County are eligible to apply for LOHF grants, which are issued twice annually. Funded activities should focus on the following: care coordination, parent/caregiver education, and/or access (improve capacity of providers to treat children).
“At LOHF, our mission is to strengthen behavioral health services for children and families so that all children and teens have access to healthcare—for mental health, substance use disorder, or behavioral health needs—as soon as possible,” Executive Director Anna Kennedy said. “The grants we provide help children and teens, their families, providers, and teachers. We invite all community benefit organizations to join us in learning about how we can improve children’s behavioral health for all families in Lancaster.”
Therefore, LOHF was pleased to award grants this month to support the following programs:
Samaritan Counseling Center – Teen Hope Program Research & Development
• Awarded: $15,000
• Will serve 6,400 family members, 1,600 children, and 200 community members
• Funds will provide research and development to advance the Teen Hope program
Teen Hope is a mental health awareness program for middle and high school students. The vanguard of the program is a screening to identify students at risk for anxiety, depression and suicide. The primary goal is to reduce suffering and disruption in the lives of teens. Teen Hope addresses the need to reach students who are suffering alone—unrecognized. Our intervention connects them with their parents and, whenever possible, with treatment.
Lancaster Public Library – Family Place’s Parent-Child Workshops
• Awarded: $7,500
• Will serve 1,550 family members, 750 children, and 10 community members
• Funds will be used to provide speakers, trainers, take-home items for families, and proper promotion of sessions.
Family Place Parent/Child Workshop is a 5 week program for babies, toddlers, and their parents and caregivers; features local professionals who serve as resources for parents; emphasizes the role of parents as the first teachers of their children; facilitates early intervention; and teaches strategies for healthy child development and early literacy. This creates the network families need to nurture their children’s development during the critical first years of life and helps ensure all children enter school ready and able to learn.
Southeast Lancaster Health Services – Reach Out and Read
• Awarded: $10,000
• Will serve 8,312 children
• Funds will be used to increase family competency
At routine health checkups from infancy through 5 years of age, Reach Out and Read providers:
• Talk with parents about how important it is to read aloud and engage with their young children
• Demonstrate how best to look at books and talk about the stories with their children
• Encourage them to cuddle up and read together at home and build routines around books
At the end of the program, every child has a home-library of books, given with advice to parents that they are their child’s first and most important teacher. SELHS tailors outreach to suit families’ specific needs. In Lancaster, this includes provision of additional languages to support our growing refugee population. This intervention is simple but powerful.
For additional information regarding grant opportunities through the Lancaster Osteopathic Health Foundation, please visit www.lohf.org/grants.