Living the Providence tradition of outreach to the under-served, Providence Saint John’s Health Center and the Saint John’s Health Center Foundation recently provided grants totaling more than $2 million to 33 programs across the Westside. 

The funding services the most vulnerable – those who experience homelessness, abused women, children from low-income households, those battling mental illness or chronic illness and others who may fall between the cracks.

“Through the Community Impact Fund, our goal is to support our local health care partners in improving the health of our community,” said Wendy Merritt, senior director, foundation relations. “Every year, we assess how effective our support has been in helping these local charities achieve their missions of improving the lives of those in need, while also reviewing new applicants to see if we can expand our impact.”

The founding Sisters of Providence and the Sisters of Charity, who established Providence Saint John’s Health Center before transferring the sponsorship in 2014 to Providence, were committed to helping the poor and vulnerable – the elderly, orphans, immigrants, the chronically ill and those with mental illnesses among them. Each year Providence Saint John’s and its affiliates and partners, often collaborating with other nonprofit organizations, reach tens of thousands of people in our communities and beyond.

The bulk of the funding – $1.4 million – was provided by the foundation to 28 programs, some of them linked to the Santa Monica hospital and serving those in need. Those programs are:

Child and Family Development Center for its perinatal wellness program 

Cleft Palate Center, for speech scholarships

Providence community benefit programs for homeless care coordination

Saint John’s Cancer Institute, surgical oncology fellowship program

Additionally, the Providence Saint John’s Community Health Investment department provided $675,000 in grants to five organizations with deep roots in the Santa Monica and surrounding areas.

The People Concern providing respite beds for those experiencing homelessness

Venice Family Clinic for its street medicine program for unhoused

Westside Family Health Center for women’s health services

St. Anne’s Catholic School to fund a nurse for student health services

The Salvation Army Santa Monica Core for its street outreach team aiding those who experience homelessness

Reflecting the mission of its founding religious sisters, the foundation also contributed to:

Cancer Support Community LA, cancer care

Growing Hope Gardens, Food Gardens that Empower

Meals on Wheels West, Community Connections

Pacific Palisades-Malibu YMCA, Teen Impact Program

St. James Inn, temporary housing of patients

Sojourn Domestic Violence Program, services for abused women and their children, as well as

The People Concern, Westside Interim Housing and Wellness Program

U.S. Vets, outreach services for homeless and at-risk veterans in West Los Angeles

Saint John’s Physician Partners, providing free at-home blood pressure monitors

Bandini Foundation, veterans program

Boys and Girls Club of Santa Monica, for healthy lifestyles and social-emotional health programs 

Catholic Big Brothers Big Sisters, wellness mentoring program, navigational support

Catholic Charities of Los Angeles, The Landing at St. Robert’s Center

Claris Health, family preservation and reunification programs

OPICA (Adult Day Care and Counseling Center) –Spirit Builders

Safe Parking LA, housing stabilization and retention

Safe Place for Youth, health and clinical programs

Santa Monica Education Foundation, student wellness programs

Santa Monica Family YMCA, Big Bear Camp youth scholarships

St. Monica Catholic Schools, for health and wellness program

UCLA/VA Family Resource and Well-Being Center, transition to housing for veterans

Vision to Learn, for free screenings, exams and glasses

Westside Food Bank, for food purchases

WISE and Healthy Aging, for adult day Spanish language and Live Alone Expansion

Submitted by Patricia Aidem