ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico — Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico (BCBSNM) awarded more than $380,000 in Healthy Kids, Healthy Families (HKHF) grants to 17 nonprofits statewide addressing social determinants of health, including access to physical and mental health care, advocacy and support, healthy food, and safe and stable housing. The 2022 HKHF grant recipients were chosen through a competitive grant application process.
HKHF is part of BCBSNM’s ongoing commitment to invest in and partner with nonprofits that provide sustainable, measurable programs in four areas: nutrition, physical activity, disease prevention and management, and supporting safe environments.
“Investing in social determinants of health is important to improving the health of our members and community,” said Janice Torrez, BCBSNM president. “Overall health includes many social and economic factors, which is why it’s so important that we fund programs statewide that address these needs.”
Established in 2011 to improve the health and wellness of children and their families across New Mexico, the HKHF grant program receives numerous applications from 501(c)(3) organizations every year. Each application is vetted based on impact, feasibility, capacity, collaboration and sustainability.
This year’s HKHF grantees include:
Central New Mexico
- Children’s Grief Center of New Mexico: To provide no-cost facilitated peer support groups for grieving young people and their caregivers.
- Cuidando los Niños: To support children and families experiencing homelessness with early childhood education, nutritious foods and life skills programs.
- Girl Scouts of New Mexico Trails: To provide the opportunity for Girl Scouts to earn a Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico Healthy Living Patch through hands-on learning about fitness, healthy relationships, physical activity, healthy choices and community environmental health.
- HopeWorks: To support day shelter, behavioral health, housing and employment services for individuals experiencing homelessness.
- Meals on Wheels of Albuquerque: To provide specialized, home-delivered meals at reduced or no cost for low-income seniors and community members.
- National Hispanic Cultural Center Foundation: To promote youth health and wellness through Circo Latino and Circo Radical summer programs, which draw from Latin American circus tradition to teach students ages 7-18 circus arts.
- New Mexico Kids Matter: To provide advocacy and support services that will prepare teen foster youth for their transition out of foster care and into healthy and safe adulthood and independent living situations.
- Oasis Albuquerque: To help older adults maintain foot health by providing a nail health clinic; reduce fear and risk of falls through the Matter of Balance program; and improve health, financial wellbeing, social connectedness and overall health through the Aging Mastery Program.
- St. Felix Pantry: To provide food for weekends and nutrition education for children in need at the Title I Puesta Del Sol Elementary School.
Northern New Mexico
- National Dance Institute New Mexico: To deliver a 25-week in-school program using dance to instill health and positive behaviors for children in seven Española and Pojoaque public schools, providing tools for physical health, nutrition and wellness.
- National Indian Youth Leadership Project Foundation: To promote healthy attitudes, behaviors and outcomes among elementary school-aged American Indian children through experiential outdoor physical activities, service learning, traditional gardening, food preparation and storytelling.
- Villa Therese Catholic Clinic: To support operations, increased capacity in all programs, and assistance for basic needs for vulnerable community members with unmet need for quality health care.
Southern New Mexico
- Jardin de los Niños: To promote infant mental health by addressing trauma through behavioral health treatment, prevention and intervention and to provide nutritious food for children and families experiencing homelessness and near homelessness.
- New Mexico State University Foundation – Fit Families: To provide health and nutrition education for children who are overweight or at risk of becoming overweight and their families; and to train southern New Mexico community health workers (promotoras) to deliver mental health curricula that supports families as they reach nutrition/physical activity goals.
- Southern New Mexico Diabetes Outreach: To educate low-income individuals and residents in underserved areas on diabetes prevention, management, nutrition and exercise through meetings, talks, classes and screenings.
- New Mexico Alliance for School Based Healthcare: To create a New Mexico Youth Action Council to strengthen New Mexico’s youth voice in health care services with a dual focus on school-based health services and disease prevention and management.
- Special Olympics New Mexico: To teach the importance of active lifestyles while creating opportunities for individuals with intellectual disabilities to be active in sports at school among non-disabled peers.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico is one of the largest commercial health insurers in New Mexico with 680,000 New Mexicans carrying a Blue Cross and Blue Shield card. Since 1940, BCBSNM has been committed to promoting the health and wellness of its members and communities through accessible, cost-effective, quality health care. BCBSNM is a Division of Health Care Service Corporation, the country’s largest customer-owned health insurer. Health Care Service Corporation is a Mutual Legal Reserve Company and an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.