The California Wellness Foundation has launched a new Advancing Wellness grants program that will focus on three interconnected goals—Bridging the Gaps in Access and Quality Care; Promoting Healthy and Safe Neighborhoods; and Expanding Education and Employment Pathways. The grants program also includes the Opportunity Fund to support innovation in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors.

“We are excited to launch the next phase of our grantmaking,” said Judy Belk, president and CEO of The California Wellness Foundation. “Advancing Wellness builds on the foundation’s long history of responding to the needs of California communities and addressing the root causes of health and wellness inequities.”

The grants are targeted at California-based non-profit organizations working in one of the three target areas, and proposals are accepted continuously.

Organizations must have a physical location to facilitate a site visit and must make a presentation about their organization to foundation staff. The grants will typically be multi-year awards valued at $150,000 to $300,000.

The process for submitting letters of interest to the foundation has been streamlined with the introduction of an online grants application system to increase efficiency and support grantees’ efforts. Grantseekers can apply at CalWellness.org.

Grants made under the Bridging the Gaps in Access and Quality Care portfolio must be related to: the equitable implementation of the Affordable Care Act; the healthcare safety net; oral healthcare for low-income adults, including seniors; and increasing diversity in the healthcare professions.

Grants made under the Promoting Healthy and Safe Neighborhoods portfolio must be related to ensuring that effective systems, infrastructures and resources are in place to support healthy living and to minimize trauma and injury resulting from violence, particularly gun violence.

Grants made under the Expanding Education and Employment Pathways portfolio must be related to charting a path to greater access to resources, opportunities, and support for adolescents and young adults. Cal Wellness defines this as “resilient youth,” i.e., young people who are in or have exited the juvenile justice system; are current or former foster youth; have been or are currently homeless or runaways; or are pregnant and/or parenting youth,. The goals of these grants are also to ensure that there is access to sufficient income and other resources through fair employment and appropriate government benefits, as well as the building and protection of financial assets for resilient youth, military veterans and formerly incarcerated adults.

The Opportunity Fund will support capacity building, public policy and innovation among nonprofit agencies and philanthropic organizations working to improve the health of Californians.

To view a video and other materials on the grantmaking program, visit http://www.calwellness.org/newsroom/sound_bites.php,.

The California Wellness Foundation is a private, independent foundation created in 1992 with a mission to improve the health of the people of California by making grants for health promotion, wellness education and disease prevention. Since its founding in 1992, Cal Wellness has awarded 7,523 grants totaling more than $899 million.