UnitedHealthcare donates $750,000 to nonprofits in Michigan

UnitedHealthcare, a UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) company, is awarding $750,000 in Empowering Health grants to four community-based organizations in Michigan to expand access to care and address the social determinants of health for uninsured individuals and underserved communities. 

In total, UnitedHealthcare is donating $11.4 million through Empowering Health grants across 18 states and the District of Columbia. The grants will assist individuals and families experiencing challenges from food insecurity, social isolation and behavioral health issues, and support local health promotion and health literacy efforts. 

Grant recipients in Michigan include:

  • Gleaners Community Food Bank– $270,000 to expand the unique School Food Mobile Pantry Program and to create a “Playbook” for developing long-term, successful relationships with school districts to reach out to food-insecure families and provide healthy food and nutritional education with the goal of increasing educational success. 
  • Forgotten Harvest– $223,000 to expand the Forgotten Harvest mobile pantry program in metro Detroit. 
  • Kids’ Health Connections– $140,000 to expand FitKids360, a healthy weight education program, and pilot Fit Families, a healthy lifestyle program for the whole family, to additional communities in the Detroit area.
  • Access Community Health and Research Center– $117,000 to expand services within the integrated treatment unit to serve individuals with coexisting diseases and substance abuse disorders. 

“Social and economic factors have a profound impact on achieving and maintaining good health,” said Dennis Mouras, CEO, UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Michigan. “Through Empowering Health grants, we’re working with local organizations to provide Michiganians with greater access to essential resources in high-risk and high-need communities so they can live healthier lives.” 

Good health encompasses more than simply visiting a doctor’s office. According to the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, nearly 80%of what influences a person’s health relates to nonmedical issues, such as food, housing, transportation and the financial means to pay for basic daily needs. And for so many, the global pandemic has caused additional social and economic challenges that continue to affect healthy behaviors and exacerbate health disparities. 

Since launching its Empowering Health commitment in 2018, UnitedHealthcare has now invested more than $40million in Empowering Health grants reaching more than 6million people through partnerships with community-based organizations in 29 states. 

UnitedHealth Group, including UnitedHealthcare and Optum, and its affiliated companies, is committed to reducing health disparities and building healthier communities by supporting programs to improve access to care and address key determinants of health. In Michigan this includes more than $4.4 million in contributions from 2018-2020 representing its businesses, foundations and employees. 

Additionally, UnitedHealth Group has invested more than $500 million in affordable housing communities since 2011, partnered with food banks and meal-delivery services, and in 2019joined with the American Medical Association to standardize how social determinants of health data is collected and used to create more holistic care plans.

This press release was provided by UnitedHealthcare.