IU Health Foundation seeks contribution for Community Impact Investment Fund

BEDFORD – Joe Timbrook and Shance Sizemore from the Lawrence County Economic Growth Council, along with Shawna Girgis, of IU Health Foundation, appeared before the Bedford City Council to ask for a contribution towards a $1.7 million Grant that the IU Health Foundation has applied for.

The Lawrence County Economic Growth Council is asking for a contribution of $50,000 for 2022-2024 for the Community Impact Investment Fund from the City of Bedford.

Lawrence County Economic Growth Council was approached by the IU Health Foundation for grant funds, to continue the work of the Lawrence County Workforce Coalition. The Lawrence County Workforce Coalition was formed during a grant opportunity in 2016.

“The employers were very vocal about the need of additional workforce and additional capacity, skill training, so that individuals in the community can earn a living wage,” said Sizemore.

The Lawrence County Workforce Coalition wrote and received a $700,000 grant for skill trades which was matched by $400,000. This enabled the group to hire employees who helped launch the Lawrence County Workforce Coalition, which the group had tremendous success with workforce training programs.

Those successes include the highest HSE completions in the state in Lawrence County, given as an example more HSE particpants graduated in Lawrence County than in Vanderburgh County. In this fiscal year, around 155 -170 student graduations are expected to be completed.

The Lawrence County Workforce Coalition was able to leverage additional grant funds of approximately $60,000 to help the Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence County. The North Lawrence Career Center received close to $ 1 Million in new equipment, including donations from IU Health of new or gently used equipment.

The Community Impact Investment Fund serves the entire region who reached out to several community members about this grant opportunity. Community Impact Investment Fund was created by IU Health through an investment of about $3 Million with the idea of really impacting the social determinants of health in people’s lives prior to showing up in the emergency room.

The social determinants of health are the economic and social conditions that influence individual and group differences in health status.

“One of the missions is to make Indiana one of the healthiest states in the United States. And if you are currently familiar with the statistics you know we are not there today,” said Shawna Girgis IU Health Foundation.

The Community Impact Fund is specifically addressing education attainment, workforce development efforts, and quality of work place.

Lawrence County Economic Growth Council signed a letter of intent and submitted an application, with interviews that happened last week. “We are excited about the impact that this could have, and being able to expand this opportunity,” stated Girgis.

The Lawrence County Workforce Coalition’s CII application is focused on meeting the current and future workforce needs of local and regional employers.

Priorities include:

  • Implement a coordinated Trauma -Informed Care model in Lawrence and Orange Counties.
  • Dr. Keesler with the IU School of Social work will provide best practices for Trauma informed care implementation
  • Collarboration with THRIVE of Orange County on Trauma Informed care implementation
  • Collarbrate with early childhood coalition to expand and improve childcare options
  • Fund case workers and implement training in schools on Trauma Informed Care and Early Warning System supporting students in crisis
  • Provide resources to support students during education transition points
  • Implement career based programming with partner organizations
  • Creating local employment pathways for students at the North Lawrence Career Center
  • Expand High School Equivlency (HSE) programs and completions in Lawrence and Orange Counties
  • Increase the number of cohorts in the introduction to local jobs and skills program
  • Obtain state certification for local career coach to support job skills graduates in next steps

The project has an extensive number of partners with the workforce and education in a Trauma-Informed Community Ecosystem.

Trauma is an event, series of events, or set of circumstances experienced by an individual as harmful or life-threatening that has lasting adverse effects. 70 percent of people have experienced at least one traumatic event.

Trauma-Informed Care is a system-wide response to adversity and trauma.

The Four R-s of Trauma-Informed Care include:

  • Realize – pervasivness of trauma
  • Reconginze – signs & symptoms
  • Respond – intergrating knowledge about trauma in policies, procedures, and practices
  • Resist Re-Traumatization – avoid causing further harm

Trauma-informed care is a relationship-based approach to restore and heal what trauma disrupted or destroyed. Trauma-informed care is important that is a fundamental shift from ” What is wrong with you to What has happened to you, which focuses on client/service recipient and service provider linked with positive experiences and improved outcomes. This increases employee satisfaction, decreased burnout, and increases client engagement and retention.

In the Lawrence County Trauma-Informed Care model with the help of Dr. Keesler Indiana University and Community Collaboration, a full-time coordinator will build and sustain momentum, coordinate and assist with training, coordinate learning collaboration across several groups, as well as coordinate and assist with evaluation and data collection.

To date, more than $313,000 has already been matched to the program.

The following organizations have match funds:

  • Lawrence County Growth Council – $20,000
  • Lawrence County Community Foundation – $10,000
  • Bedford Federal Savings Bank – $7,500
  • PRD – $5,000
  • Ivy Tech – $2,000
  • Radius Indiana – $5,000
  • North Lawrence Community Schools – $20,000
  • Mitchell Community Schools – $5,000
  • Stone City Products – $4,000
  • Vision Group – $5,000
  • CAP Group – $5.000
  • Regional Opprotunties Intiatives – $5.000
  • General Motors Foundation – $20,000
  • Hoosier Energy – $2,500
  • Total in the first year – $116,000

The City of Bedford will host a special meeting on August 30, to discuss the funding requests of White River Humane Society, Men’s Warming Shelter, and IU Health Foundation grant request.