One of the many benefits of the new affiliation of Hartford HealthCare (HHC) and Charlotte Hungerford Hospital (CHH) is the establishment of the new Greater Torrington Building Healthier Communities Fund. Earlier this year, HHC established a $2,500,000 fund with the assistance of the Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation for the express purpose of “…enhancing the economic and community well-being of the Greater Torrington Region…”
To fulfill its mission, a donor-advised committee with regional representation from HHC and CHH, along with public, community and business representatives was formed and now meets monthly to recommend distributions of income and/or principal from the Fund for any purpose consistent with the Fund’s designation. The Foundation will govern the investment and spending policies.
The Board will be distributing funds to applicants from the region in hopes of achieving growth in the areas of jobs and wages measured by unemployment rate and median income and in municipal net grand lists. They will also look to a make a meaningful difference in addressing the social determinants of health as measured by a composite of educational attainment, employment status, access to health services, recreational and leisure-time activities, housing status, and measures of public safety and community aesthetics.
The Fund committee began setting its priorities by consulting a recent health assessment, regional economic strategic plan, and collection of data and information available through public forums and reports. It then identified an initial set of potential funding categories including education, health and healthcare access, neighborhood and environment, and economic stability and growth. It is now defining areas of need in the community and once selected plans to tie any funding strategies to particular metrics or milestones as a definition of success. Committee members include Christina Emery, John Janco, Brian Mattiello, Gregory S. Oneglia, Dr. Michael Rook, Renee Marcus, with two Ex Officio and Non-Voting members Elinor Carbone and Candy Perez.
Currently the Board is seeking input from community leaders and the public and will be hosting an interactive workshop to solicit feedback and additional proactive innovations and ideas for board funding considerations. All are welcome to attend on Wednesday, November 28, from 6 – 8 pm in the Nancy Marine Studio Theatre Corridor at 68 Main Street, Torrington. For more information about this event or the work of the fund, call 860-496-6725.
“The Greater Torrington and Winsted areas stand at the threshold of a new economic era. Building on its current community assets, its challenges must be viewed as its opportunities. We believe strongly that the region’s social and economic conditions will be positively influenced through the use of this Fund, and in ways that can be sustained and experienced over time.” said Brian Mattiello, CHH Vice President of Strategy and Community Development.