Healthy Communities Fund (HCF)

Organization Sponsor: Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care

URLs: 

Program Description

This is a $16 million grant program to support community partnerships to plan and deliver integrated services that improve the health of Ontarians. The HCF builds on current ministry funding programs and provides more opportunities for provincial and local organizations to apply for funding. The fund requires increased partnerships among stakeholder organizations, resulting in more comprehensive health promotion programs that provide Ontarians with better access to priority health promotion programs and services. Upon an analysis of the evaluation of the HCF.
The Healthy Communities Fund (HCF) supports communities to plan and deliver integrated programs that improve the health of Ontarians. The Fund plays a key role in helping to achieve the program's vision of healthy communities working together and Ontarians leading healthy and active lives. The goals of the Healthy Communities Fund are to:

* Create a culture of health and well-being;
* Build healthy communities through coordinated action;
* Create policies and programs that make it easier for Ontarians to be healthy; and
* Enhance the capacity of community leaders to work together on healthy living.

Funding Sources: 

Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and the newly formed Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.

Strategies For Sustainability: 

The Healthy Communities Fund (HCF) Grant Program provides non-capital funding to organizations for the delivery of integrated health promotion initiatives in communities across Ontario. The Program plays a key role in helping to achieve a vision of healthy communities working together and Ontarians leading healthy and active lives through the funding of projects that address two or more of the following health promotion priorities (in alphabetical order):

* Healthy eating;
* Injury prevention;
* Mental health promotion;
* Physical activity, sport and recreation;
* Reducing tobacco use/exposure; and
* Substance and/or alcohol misuse prevention.

Impact Of Program: 

In the last two years, HCF has already benefited over 500,000 Ontarians through more than 360 different projects in communities across the province.

Key Elements Towards Success: 

The Healthy Communities Fund has three main components:
* Grants Project Stream
A one-window approach to funding provincial organizations to deliver health promotion initiatives that address two or more of the Ministry’s priority areas - physical activity, injury prevention, healthy eating, mental health promotion, reducing tobacco use and exposure, and preventing alcohol and substance misuse.
* Partnership Stream
Supports coordinated community mobilization activities to develop local healthy eating and physical activity policies that make it easier for Ontarians to be healthy.
* Resource Stream
Provides consultations, learning activities and resources to those working to advance health promotion in Ontario, including local partnerships and provincial organizations that apply for and/or receive funding through the HCF Grants Project Stream.
HC Link is the Resource Stream component of the Healthy Communities Fund. HC Link works with community groups, organizations, and partnerships to build healthy, vibrant communities.

Challenges To Meet Them: 

The HCF Grant Program will continue to create opportunities for under-served and disadvantaged persons who do not have equitable access to health promotion programming in their communities. The Program will provide non-capital, project-based seed funding to organizations for the delivery of integrated health promotion programming where it is needed most in Ontario, while facilitating partnerships between multiple sectors and networks working to promote health.

Length and Stage of Project: 

In 2009 the Ministry of Health Promotion and Sport announced their new initiative, the Healthy Communities Fund.

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