The BUILD Health Challenge Announces 18 New, Cross-Sector Partnerships

San Antonio (Nov. 19, 2019)–Today, the BUILD Health Challenge® welcomed its Third Cohort of awardees — including 18 new communities throughout the U.S. — that will receive a total of $8 million in funding and resources to transform health at the local level over the next two years. The Hope for Health Collaborative out of Kerrville, TX is among those 18 communities, representing the first BUILD Health Challenge community in the Texas Hill Country.

Launched in 2015, the BUILD Health Challenge addresses the intersectional factors that impact health and well-being at the community level. BUILD recognizes that direct medical care, while critical, is only one piece of the puzzle when it comes to lifting up the standards of living for people in the U.S. and works across sectors with local community organizations to affect positive, sustainable improvements to community health.

“Expenditures in health account for nearly 18 percent of the American economy, and yet as a nation we still struggle with creating conditions that allow for everyone to have the opportunity to reach their greatest health potential,” said Emily Yu, Executive Director of the BUILD Health Challenge. “Changing this narrative means two things: approaching health as a holistic issue that involves social, economic and physical variables; and supporting those who know best how to care for their communities by supporting their work with the tools to drive change.”

“Methodist Healthcare Ministries is proud to support The BUILD Health Challenge and bring much needed attention and investment to Central Texas,” said Jaime Wesolowski, President & CEO of Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc. “We congratulate the Hope for Health Collaborative and all the contributing partners in Kerrville for creating a strong program that helps the community thrive and strengthens families in the Doyle neighborhood of Kerrville and across the Texas Hill Country.”

The Hope For Health Collaborative was formed by New Hope Counseling Center, Peterson Health, the Texas Department of State Health Services-Region 8, Barnett Chapel and Glory Community Garden, Light on the Hill at Mt. Wesley, the City of Kerrville and The Doyle School Community Center in a joint application for the BUILD Health challenge. These organizations, as well as many others, committed to work together to address the revitalization of the Doyle neighborhood of Kerrville, with a focus on social connection, navigation and resident participation to address their individual and community resources and healthcare needs.

“The Hope for Health Collaborative is very proud to bring home this award for our Kerrville community!” Brenda Fudge, executive director of New Hope shares, “Blessed with abundant resources and the willingness of many to share their gifts and talents, this BUILD Health Challenge award is a wonderful opportunity to all work together, creating and laying the groundwork for sustainable improvements that will translate into overall well-being for the residents of the Doyle neighborhood.”

The BUILD Health Challenge is excited to fund dynamic collaboratives that are addressing critical issues such as food security, maternal and child health, transportation planning, and housing through a health equity lens. The $8 million in awards and resources will support community-driven partnerships in each of the 18 new communities aimed at addressing these issues. In addition, each collaborative includes a local hospital partner that is also contributing monetary and/or in-kind support to the project, collectively adding more than $5 million to the overall award total.

“Since our first cohort started four years ago, we’ve seen positive health outcomes in communities across the country through the collaboration of local organizations, residents and community leaders,” said Yu. “Now more than ever we are seeing that the future of health lies in supporting local collaborations that include cross-sector and community driven involvement. Together, these partners are rewriting the playbook for better health and finding new and sustainable ways to tackle our country’s most pressing health issues.”

The first two cohorts of BUILD Health Challenge, launched in 2015 and 2017, included 37 unique community partnerships across 24 states. To date, the awardees’ efforts have yielded promising policy changes and community health solutions such updating regulations that prevent people from having to live in substandard housing that jeopardizes their health; leveraging data to identify hidden health trends in neighborhoods; and reimagining food supply and distribution channels in communities to address food insecurity. The BUILD Health Challenge is proud to welcome 18 communities to our ever-growing network of health disruptors and champions.

The projects and communities selected are:

· Advancing Community Partnerships to Increase Food Access in Southern Dallas – Food distribution[Dallas, TX]

· BUILD Fourth Plain – Healthy housing[Vancouver, WA]

· BUILD Sherman Park – Healthy housing and safe communities[Milwaukee, WI]

· Caring About Reno’s Elderly (CARE) – Geriatric and elderly care[Reno, NV]

· Collaborative Cottage Grove – Healthy housing[Greensboro, NC]

· Crecer La Confianza, Crecer La Salud – Children’s health[Greenville, SC]

· Empowering a Self-Healing Community: Safety, Self-sufficiency and Well-being in North Omaha – Community revitalization[Omaha, NE]

· Healthy Babies, Empowered Moms, Flourishing Families – Maternal and child health[Sunflower County, MS]

· Health Havenscourt Collaborative – Healthy housing[Oakland, CA]

· Healthy Highland – Community revitalization[Gastonia, NC]

· Healthy Together Medical-Legal Partnership to Improve Health in DC by Enhancing Community Resilience – Children’s health[Washington, DC]

· Marion County CHFE (Creating Health Food Environments) Project – Food justice[Marion County, SC]

· Maternal and Child Health at Columbia Parc – Maternal and child health[New Orleans, LA]

· Maternal Upstream Management (MUM) – Maternal and child health[Houston, TX]

· New Brunswick Healthy Housing Collaborative – Healthy housing[New Brunswick, NJ]

· Roots to Prevention – Food justice[Camden, NJ]

· Strong Immigrant Communities Through Collective Action for Housing Affordability and Ownership – Community revitalization[Vallejo, CA]

· The Hope for Health Collaborative – Community revitalization[Kerrville, TX]

Partnerships in Oakland, Greensboro, Washington, and New Brunswick, return for the Third Cohort building on momentum from a past award they received from the BUILD Health Challenge.

The BUILD Health Challenge is also honored to have leading grantmaking organizations partnering in this effort. This collaboration blends national perspective with issue-specific and regional expertise, and aims to inspire similar teamwork among organizations at the local level that will help to uncover tomorrow’s best practices for community health. The Third Cohort is made possible with support from the BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina Foundation, the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, Blue Shield of California Foundation, Communities Foundation of Texas, de Beaumont Foundation, Episcopal Health Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc., New Jersey Health Initiatives, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

Learn more about the BUILD Health Challenge communities at



About Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc.

Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc. is a private, faith-based not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating access to health care for the uninsured through direct services, community partnerships and strategic grant-making in 74 counties across South Texas. Guided by its mission of "Serving Humanity to Honor God," Methodist Healthcare Ministries’ vision is to be the leader for improving wellness of the least served. The mission also includes Methodist Healthcare Ministries' one-half ownership of the Methodist Healthcare System, the largest healthcare system in South Texas, which creates a unique avenue to ensure that it continues to be a benefit to the community by providing quality care to all and charitable care when needed. For more information, visit 

About The Build Health Challenge

The BUILD Health Challenge® is a national award that strengthens partnerships between local nonprofit organizations, hospitals and health systems, and local health departments to drive sustainable improvements in community health. Created by the de Beaumont Foundation, the Colorado Health Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2015, it has grown to now also include support from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation; BlueCross and BlueShield of South Carolina Foundation; Blue Shield of California; Communities Foundation of Texas; Episcopal Health Foundation; Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc.; New Jersey Health Initiatives; and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.