Healthier Communities

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Healthier Communities Grant - 2021/22

In January of 2021, Sentara Healthcare announced a $10 Million Community investment to address health disparities and bolster regional health sciences programs.

The principal objective of this initiative is to improve the health of the communities we serve and make a dramatic difference in the lives of our patients and neighbors.  The investment consists of three areas of focus and will enhance capabilities for Sentara's partner universities and collaboration between the universities, health systems and community partners to improve public health:

  • University Grants ($4 million total): $2 million each to support Old Dominion University (ODU) and Norfolk State University (NSU) in pursuit of their goal for the development of a School of Public Health.        
  • Collaborative Grants (up to $3 million): Support for collaboration between ODU, EVMS and NSU. Grants will be allocated to ODU/EVMS, NSU/EVMS, or all three as they jointly collaborate to address the public health and health inequities in underserved communities.  Community-based organizations may be included but 2 of the 3 institutions listed above must be included in the application.
  • Community Grants (up to $3 million): Support for communities and community service entities in regions of Hampton Roads that we serve but are beyond the immediate footprint of ODU, NSU, or EVMS. The intent for this fund allocation is to make public health and health equity improvement grants in the greater Hampton Roads region outside of the ODU/NSU/EVMS core service area in Southside Hampton Roads (e.g. Newport News, Hampton, Suffolk, Eastern Shore, etc.). These funds will be allocated to community organizations and other partners to work together to address public health and health inequities in underserved communities in these localities


  • Letters of Intent (LOIs) are due  by May 31, 11:59 pm EST


The following goals are intended to guide the grant recipients in the prioritized use of these funds for the improvement of public health and health inequities in underserved communities:

  • Create and enhance capabilities of partner universities to directly impact and improve public health and health equity in underserved communities;
  • Promote and enhance the collaboration between ODU, NSU and EVMS;
  • Support community organizations to improve public health and health inequities;
  • Promote long-term sustainability of public health and health equity activities and funding required to assure continuity of programs.


  1. The program must address public health issues and reductions in health disparities.
  2. Grant requests must include collaboration among at least two of the three universities listed: ODU, NSU, EVMS. Universities will work together to submit the request.


  1. Community based organizations in the greater Hampton Roads region.
  2. Organizations operating in the primary footprint of ODU, NSU, and EVMS, i.e. Southside Hampton Roads, are excluded from eligibility.


  1. The LOI should build upon promising pilot data demonstrating improved outcomes related to public health. This might include augmentation and larger-scale implementation of a program initially funded by other community partners, or a new project never funded by Sentara Healthcare.

  2. The LOI must have potential for scaling (e.g., production of a template that can be applied in real world settings).
  3. The LOI must include a plan to measure the effectiveness of the proposed project using specific, measurable objectives.
  4. The LOI should clearly outline how the project will use novel approaches to improve public health and reduce health disparities. These novel approaches may include the use of non-professionals, health care providers other than mental health clinicians, digital technology (e.g. the internet, apps for cell phones), or other innovative methods.


The program should include the following components: 

  1. Letter of intent submitted via web portal.

  2. If your letter of intent is accepted then you will be invited to apply. The application will require a detailed description of the proposed research: The program must clearly state the objectives of the research, how they will be tested, and address any challenges or potential barriers to program implementation.

  3. Timeline for project implementation and completion.

  4. Sources of potential funding for larger scale program implementation.

Please direct questions to
 (757) 455-7976

Healthier Communities Letter of Intent

Contact Information
Organization Information
Service Area of Program/Project
enter in percentage format, e.g. 75.4, not .754
Program/Project Information
at least 30 days from today

List at least three (3) specific, measurable and quantifiable objectives of the program/project. The objective should be to increase, decrease, or maintain a specific metric from its existing value to a new value. The metric can be a number or a percentage. If the intention is to maintain, then the numbers should be the same. If it is a new objective that has not been tracked before, it should be from 0 to the intended value. 

For example: [Increase] the [% percentage] of [clients with positive outcomes] from [80] to [85] by [date] (fields in brackets).

Process objectives may also be inserted with the goal to complete the process by a specified date.

For example: [Complete] the [process] of [hiring a program director] by [date] (fields in brackets).

(200 character limit)
Existing value prior to grant period. If data not available, insert an educated guess.
Goal value for end of grant period