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Accelerating Health Equity

Community Gardening

Community Health

Advancing well-being requires different ways of thinking about the hospital’s role in its community. Increasingly, hospitals are proactively moving upstream to address patients’ social needs and to help address systematic social determinants of health, such as food security, housing, safe neighborhoods and more. Health care organizations cannot improve population health alone, but must do so in partnership with the communities they serve. Authentic collaboration with community-based organizations is needed to advance health equity for all. Accordant is positioned to assist health care and other community anchor organizations in assessing, designing and elevating agile community partnerships to advance this important work.

  • Advancing Community Partnerships

  • Developing Sustainable Funding Strategies

  • Strengthening Community Investment: Grantmaking Advisory Services

  • Making the Case for Community Health

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Equity Is the Center of Everything


Health Equity is when everyone has the opportunity to be as healthy as possible. It is the state in which everyone has a fair and just opportunity to attain their highest level of health. (CDC) 

As hospitals strive to improve the health of their communities and address health equalities, moving upstream to address the social determinants of health (SDOH) are becoming more commonplace to reduce costs and deliver better health outcomes. More than eighty four percent of health care organizations are screening their patients for SDOH and more than seventy percent have at least one program or strategy to address SDOH. (AHA) With financial resources being the number one reason why health care organizations are not doing more in this area, philanthropy has an opportunity to make a positive impact on our patients and community.


Our team has decades of experience building campaign strategies to solve complex issues such as Community Health Equity. As your organization grapples with this complicated issues here are a few things we believe you should consider.

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Explore more with our latest thinking on Community Health Equity.

Key Questions you Need Answered


What are the Unique Characteristics and Needs of Our Community?

Equity may be a universal challenge but as hospitals and foundations look for solutions their needs can be vastly different. Is your community urban or rural? Is your community younger or older? Do geographic barriers play a role in access and health care delivery? The Accordant approach collects these data points to help you assess your strategy and campaign efforts.


Are you considering a Stand Alone Community Health Equity Campaign or as a Comprehensive Campaign? 

Accordant can support you whether community health equity is a portion of a larger, more traditional capital and/or program-based campaign or if health equity is the stand-alone case. As part of our assessment, the Accordant team will work with you to determine the best approach for success.


How do You Make Community Health Equity Appealing to Donors?

Crafting the right story around your commitment to health equity is a crucial factor of your success. Donors should see the connection to health care and the expected direct impact. Our team of communications experts will help you build your story and engage donors in new and exciting ways.

Assessing Your Campaign

Our approach to community health equity campaign and assessments are similar to typical capital or specialty focused campaigns. However, our approach factors in the numerous unique elements of community health initiatives.

Our work begins by engaging the staff, board and key stakeholder’s baseline understanding (such as the understanding of community health/well-being, the role of the healthcare organization in community health/well-being work including: 

  • Your ability to translate and share the community health story with donors

  • Identifying the unique gaps and needs in your community

  • Training and education to align stakeholders and donors with the vision for the campaign

  • Strategically aligned project selection to engages the community health stakeholders and focuses beyond basic capital/special cases

  • A fresh look into the organization’s current potential philanthropic partners who have previously funded core specialty initiatives as well as new community partners

The Equity Lens

Accordant also approaches its work with an equity lens. 

We build the equity viewpoint into everything we do including:
research, presentations, and manuals, the constituents we interview, and the question set we use during conversations. 

Health equity is also incorporated into every case we develop with our clients whether the case is for capital, workforce, research, community health, etc. 


Amy Dorrill, Practice Leader


The service line is led by Amy Dorrill who has 25+ years of front line fundraising and leadership for community health/well-being initiatives. Amy has fundraised for CHNA priorities, social services, medical home models, population-based initiatives, etc. successfully implementing, expanding and sustaining programs with the support of individuals, corporations (including traditionally competitive organizations), foundations, and government entities.  She has also served as an expert presenter to foundation boards, staff and professional associations both small and large and inclusive of online, in person and hybrid models.  

Engagement Options

Whether community health equity is a new priority or a regular initiative, Accordant is the right partner to help you assess, design and advance your community health initiative. Our team averages more than 20 years of health care philanthropy experience to help you steer through the process. Accordant custom-tailors most engagements to meet the unique needs of your organization and communities.  


Accordant is ready to support your community health equity case for philanthropic support along with your other priorities including assistance with: 

  1. Project selection: identifying the community health equity initiative best aligned with the organizational priority and donor interest

  2. Case development: developing a case for philanthropic support that resonates with existing and new donors 

  3. Campaign assessment (health equity only or one piece of a comprehensive campaign)

  4. Campaign support (health equity only or part of a comprehensive campaign)

  5. Staff and board training such as: 

  • Understand health care’s national movement to value-based/community health approach

  • Understand what community health equity is and why health care organizations are addressing social determinants of health (the business case and the patient case)

  • Communicate the organization’s unique vision for community impact

  • Assistance with identifying the right community health equity case for support 

  • Learn how to effectively share the community health equity case

  • Learn how to effectively make a major gift ask in general

  • Identify donors who have capacity for a major gift ($25,000 over 5 years)

  • Identify donors who would be interested in community impact initiatives

  • Advance the foundation’s board training and education

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