Knight Cancer Institute at OHSU funds 13 community projects

Oregon Health and Science University’s (OHSU) Knight Cancer Institute awarded $320,000 to thirteen community projects to address cancer-related health needs in the state last week. The grant funded ten new programs and three ongoing programs. 


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The Community Partnership Program, a Knight Cancer Institute’s program, supports the development of community groups and projects working to address cancer-related health needs in Oregon. They do this through grants, training, technical assistance, networking, and collaboration with community groups. A press release said:

“The Community Partnership program works with Oregon communities on projects that range from cancer prevention through survivorship. The program offers multiple tiers of funding to help local organizations identify cancer-related needs and create solutions.”

Since 2014, the Community Partnership Program has invested more than $4 million into 152 projects. The program has a three tier system of annual grants. Tier one is up to $10,000, tier two up is to $25,000, and tier three is up to $50,000.  

The grant newly funded existing community programs like a grief support center in John Day called “Thadd’s Place,” which develops programs to provide grief and counseling support to patients and families affected by cancer. Sylvia Ross, secretary at Thadd’s Place said:

“We are creating resources and support groups tailored for cancer patients and their families to help them navigate the grief process from diagnosis through treatment and end of life. Currently, there are no emotional support services for anticipatory grief in Grant County and this grant will help change that.”

The grant continued to fund programs like the Oregon School-Based Health Alliance to further expand its program to increase knowledge of human papillomavirus (HPV) to high school aged children in both urban and rural communities. According to OHSU, in 2020, only 55% of Oregonians between 13 and 17 received their HPV vaccination. 

Maureen Hinman, interim executive director at the Oregon School-Based Health Alliance, said more schools in Multnomah and Hood River counties will receive their HPV education programming as a result of the new funding from the Community Partnership Program. 

Jackilen Shannon, Ph.D., co-director of the Community Partnership Program and associate director of community outreach and engagement at the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute said:

“We’re fortunate to have the opportunity to work with community-based organizations on projects that will not only have a positive impact locally—but will help reduce the burden of cancer in Oregon. Together, we’re making strides in our mission to end cancer as we know it.” 

Organizations and initiatives can apply for a grant here.