Trust Funding to Tackle Chronic Illness in Rockingham County

Investment Part of Long-Term Healthy Places NC Initiative

The Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust is funding the establishment of a Rural Health Center in Eden to provide low-income residents of Rockingham County with access to primary medical and behavioral health care. The Trust announced the funding in conjunction with a series of grants that will help the county promote healthy living and combat chronic disease. The grants are a part of the Trust’s Healthy Places NC initiative, a long-term initiative aimed at improving the quality of life and health in rural, financially disadvantaged North Carolina counties.

The Rockingham County Healthcare Alliance received $501,367 in grants to establish a Rural Health Center. The grant includes capital funds to purchase equipment for the two-exam-room practice located on the campus of Morehead Memorial Hospital. The clinic will provide access to primary medical and behavioral health care in one location and expand access for over 1,000 new patients.

The Trust also awarded the Boys and Girls Club of Eden $413,693 to revitalize its gym and fitness room and to expand Triple Play—a health and wellness program, developed in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which works to increase daily physical activity, good nutrition and the development of healthy relationships amongst children. The project is aligned with local efforts to address obesity and inactivity led by the Rockingham County Department of Public Health’s Local Physical Activity and Nutrition group and the Rockingham County School System.

“Unhealthy lifestyle choices and chronic illness continues to plague our community, costing far too much money and preventing our residents from living productive lives—but we are starting to turn things around,” said Amy Nalley, executive director of the Boys and Girls Club of Eden. “Ensuring that our youth have access to primary care and programs that teach them about wellness and healthy living is a critical step toward making Rockingham County a healthier and productive place to live.”

In addition, the Trust made grants to the YMCA of Greensboro and Town of Mayodan. The YMCA will expand a national diabetes prevention program to YMCA locations in Alamance and Rockingham counties. The Town of Mayodan will work to improve access to healthy foods and opportunities for physical activity in the western part of Rockingham County.

“We are honored to work with communities like Rockingham County, where local organizations and individuals are coming together to address complex health challenges as a community,” said Jehan Benton-Clark, senior program officer for the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust. “There is true momentum in Rockingham County to tackle chronic illness and promote health, and these grants are evidence of the impressive work the community is undertaking.”

Rockingham County has participated in Healthy Places NC since 2013. The Trust plans to invest $100 million in 10 to 15 rural, low-income countries over a 10-year period. Four other counties—Beaufort, Burke, Halifax and McDowell—currently participate in Healthy Places NC.

The $3.7 million in grants to organizations working in Rockingham County was announced as part of the Trust’s recent grant cycle, when the foundation approved more than $10.6 million in funding to improve the overall health of North Carolinians, with an intense focus on rural, low-income communities.

Overall, the Trust’s Health Care Division made 44 grants this cycle to improve the health of financially disadvantaged individuals of all ages across the state. For a complete list of recent grants approved by the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust’s Health Care Division, see the attached list.