Project Term: 24 months; 2020-2022
Grant Amount: $500,000
This project will continue MHCF’s collaboration with the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services to strengthen local and tribal public health throughout the state. Since 2014, MHCF and DPHHS have worked together by providing small grants and technical support to train boards of health and support community health assessments, health improvement plans, strategic plans, and implementation projects in counties and tribes throughout Montana. This new project will build on that work with four new aims. First, it will reach, engage, and build the capacity of the health departments that the Public Health System Improvement Office has not engaged to date. Second, it will continue providing mini grants and technical support for public health planning and implementation projects, but with a new emphasis on sustainability and business planning. Third, it will support cross-jurisdictional planning processes and the sharing of public health services across counties at the request of local jurisdictions. And, finally, it will improve the engagement of local boards of health and public health governance. The project will also include a new emphasis on developing cross-sector collaborations with hospitals and other partners, which will contribute to more sustainable public health services. The grant funding will be used to provide direct grant money to local and tribal health departments, provide funding for travel for direct technical assistance, and provide funding for travel for the local board of health members and the lead local to the National Association of Local Boards of Health. Also, a portion of the funds, will be used to support Communities that Care, again with a focus on supporting local and tribal health department participation. If needed, part of the budget will be used to hire consultants to work directly on issues such as business planning and cross-jurisdictional services.