Recently, Henry Ford Health System received a $266,000 grant from BET and United Way of Southeast Michigan. The funding came from the BET storytelling project, which intended to support the needs of communities throughout the United States during the COVID-19 pandemic. This new funding will allow Henry Ford’s Office of Community Health, Equity, and Wellness to start the At Your Door: Food and More (AYD) program. AYD will provide contact-free deliveries of food boxes, PPE, diapers, culturally informed education, and equipment for virtual support.
To make sure this funding was put directly into the community, it was distributed among already existing, successful programs: WIN Network: Detroit’s Group Prenatal Care (GPC), Fresh Prescription, and Knock and Check.
The AYD program provides our WIN Network families with healthy food boxes, recipes, virtual cooking demonstrations, baby items, and connections to other food resources. The food boxes are being put together in a partnership with Gleaner’s Food Bank. Mothers and families can get the boxes delivered to their homes every other week, for up to 8 weeks. By also partnering with Peaches and Greens, a community organization, we can ensure that mothers and their families receive the most up-to-date information about nutrition resources, so that they can continue getting healthy foods for themselves and their families even beyond the 8 weeks of the food boxes. One mother, Ms. Seantease Young said, “What was in the box was really nice, we got five different fruits, vegetables as well…it did come as a big help for me and my family.”
Caption: Ms. Seantease Young (second from the left) with her daughter, her Certified Nurse Midwife, Elikem (far left), and a few other WIN Network families on a tour of the Labor and Delivery unit, so that mothers can see where they will be having their babies.
In addition to food and recipes, this grant also helps to fund WIN Network: Detroit’s Group Prenatal Care (GPC) program by providing resources to make the program remotely accessible. The GPC program was made virtual at the start of stay-at-home orders, but with this additional funding, it is now able to be further expanded. Expectant mothers can get scales, blood pressure cuffs, and sonogram dopplers to monitor their own health and their baby’s health throughout their pregnancy, without having to go to their doctor’s office. Mothers will return this equipment after their babies are born so that other women can use them, even after stay-at-home orders and social distancing guidelines have been relaxed. By having a virtual GPC option in place, we can work towards eliminating other barriers to prenatal care and community support for Detroit mamas.
Finally, this grant will also work towards mapping the resources in the community for all its members. With this, Henry Ford Health System and the WIN Network will be able to learn how to better support the community by identifying their specific needs in this pandemic and beyond.
Read more about this grant here on Henry Ford Health System’s website.