BlueAngel Community Health Grants

At Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island, our vision is to improve the quality of life of our customers and the people of Rhode Island by improving their health. The BlueAngel Community Health Grant program—an annual, competitive grant program—allows us to further our vision by addressing critical health issues in Rhode Island. We achieve this by partnering with community-based agencies that are trying to improve the health of Rhode Islanders.

This funding program is the cornerstone of our community investment activities at BCBSRI, and we are proud of the organizations we have worked with and the results achieved since we began collaborating with partners in this way more than 14 years ago.

Since 2014, we’ve focused our funding on one of the most critical issues facing our state: preventing and reducing childhood obesity in Rhode Island’s youth. About one-third of American children are either overweight or obese, and childhood obesity is projected to cost children five years of their lives. Healthy habits formed at a young age have a tremendous impact on health outcomes in adulthood, which is why funding for prevention is vitally important. This is especially true in low-income communities and communities of color in which children face an even higher risk of becoming obese than the national average.

By collaborating with local organizations, we hope to make our state healthier and stronger while easing the financial strain on our already overburdened healthcare system. Read more about childhood obesity in this issue brief from Rhode Island Kids Count.

We are now accepting letters of intent for the 2018 grant funding cycle! Please learn more about how to apply

Here is how the application process works:

The grant application cycle for 2018 is now open. Please determine eligibility and complete a Letter of Intent via BCBSRI’s CyberGrants system by 4:00 p.m. on Friday, August 11, 2017 to be considered for 2018 grant funding. If you have not already created an account with BCBSRI’s CyberGrants system, please create one by selecting “Create your password” above the log-in section.

  1. Rhode Island-based organizations that are tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Code are invited to submit a letter of intent. Collaborations and coalitions must have a lead applicant organization with 501(c)(3) status. Our preference is to fund organizations working in schools vs. funding individual schools directly. Similarly, preference for funding will be given to organizations working with state/city agencies vs. funding state/city agencies directly.
    Organizations must be seeking funding for programs addressing childhood obesity; examples might include:
    • Increase access to affordable healthy foods and/or safe places to be active.
    • Support local community-based organizations that provide community education and outreach on the importance of good nutrition, physical activity, and healthy weight for children and their families
    BCBSRI will favor applicants that offer:
    • Innovative programs that expand and enhance services, increase capacity, and/or incorporate new strategies to support healthy body weights among young children
    • Evidenced-based interventions or prevention initiatives
    • Collaborations with one or more agencies working together
  2. Each letter of intent will be reviewed to determine if it meets the eligibility guidelines established by BCBSRI on the basis of our available resources for the current year. Organizations completing a letter of intent will hear from BCBSRI regarding a decision to invite a full proposal.
  3. Organizations invited to submit a full proposal will have approximately 30 days to complete the application online. Site visits will be conducted prior to the review committee convening. Proposals for funding are reviewed by a diverse volunteer review committee comprised of community representatives from both the public and the private sector. Funding decisions will be made based on the committee’s recommendations.
  4. Grant awards are announced in December, and funding begins in January of the following year. Grants may be renewed for a maximum of one additional year (at an equal or lesser amount) based on successful performance and results. All grant recipients will be monitored with six-month and year-end reports and periodic site visits.
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