Mat-Su Health Foundation Announces $1.5 Million In Grant Awards24-Dec-2012
Wasilla, AK— Mat-Su Health Foundation (MSHF) recently announced four Healthy Impact grant awards. Valley Residential Services, LINKS Mat-Su Parent Resource Center, Camp Fire USA-Alaska Council, and the Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center received grants for projects to improve the health and wellness of people living in the Mat-Su Borough.
Valley Residential Services (VRS) received a grant of $925,000 to assist with the purchase of the Century Plaza office building in Wasilla. VRS manages the daily operation of rental units serving the special housing needs of 250 local tenants. They have been leasing 1,500 square feet of office space in the Century Plaza building for the past eight years. The idea to purchase the building came as a result of a feasibility study conducted to find ways to produce additional revenue to underwrite the operating expenses of providing special needs housing. After the purchase of Century Plaza is complete, VRS will act as landlord of the office building and supply leasing and maintenance functions there similar to what they provide for their assisted living housing units.
LINKS Mat-Su Parent Resource Center was awarded a grant of $462,270 to create the Valley's first Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC). Links will continue to function as the Mat-Su Borough's only Parent Resource Center serving families of special education students in the school system who have Individual Education Programs (IEP), but the creation of the ADRC expands the LINKS mission to include working with the senior population as well as all eligible individuals who experience a disability.
Campfire USA-Alaska Council received a grant for $99,092 to help build a health center and shower house at its Kenai-based Camp K facility. The health center will be utilized by all camp participants for emergency first aid care and health needs, and it will provide ADA compliant accessible shower and restroom facilities. Over the past five years, 13.5% of all children attending their summer programs have come from the Matanuska-Susitna Borough. This equates to more than 470 Mat-Su kids over five years.
The Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center (ANHC) was awarded $50,000 to purchase furniture, fixtures and equipment for their new health center in midtown Anchorage. About 2.6% of the center's patients come from the Mat-Su. The new facility will have six more dental chairs than the previous location, allowing for an increase from 8,000 visits per year to 25,000 when they reach optimal capacity. Lack of dental services in the Valley has been a long-standing problem for patients who utilize community health centers for their medical care.
Healthy Impact grants from the Mat-Su Health Foundation fund projects over $15,000 that improve the health and wellness of people living in the Mat-Su Borough. The application period for the next round of grants is currently open; interested local non-profit organizations can learn more at www.healthymatsu.org
Mat-Su Health Foundation is the official business name of Valley Hospital Association, Inc., which shares ownership in Mat-Su Regional Medical Center. In this capacity, the MSHF board members and representatives actively participate in the governance of Mat-Su's community hospital and protect the community's interest in this important healthcare institution through board oversight. The MSHF invests its assets into charitable works that improve the health and wellness of Alaskans living in Mat-Su.