Building Community - Quick Overview
Lonely, isolated people often experience poor health. Conversely, people who have healthy relationships and live in a caring community are more likely to experience good health.
This is one of the reasons that we at Maple City Health Care Center see community development as our mission.
Rather than define ourselves as a health care organization that does some community development activities on the side, we define ourselves as a community development organization whose primary community development activity is providing health care.
What does this mean in practical terms?
First, our Board regularly evaluates the status of the health of the community. The Board pays special attention to community assets and asks how we at Maple City Health Care Center can use and amplify assets in our community.
Second, we integrate our programs with other community development efforts. For example, we see that safe, affordable housing contributes to the health of the community so we coordinate with and support La Casa, a local housing provider.
Third, we seek to build relationships between members of the community. Our Centering Pregnancy program and our Healthy Living program use groups. People in the groups form and improve relationships with each other.
Finally, our community development mission informs decisions. One example is the decision to create our More Than Money program. In the More Than Money program, we trade a patient’s health care for their volunteering to build the community. A different organization would see a trade like this as a drain on their resources. We see it as a totally appropriate use of resource since it helps us accomplish our mission.
Our community development work won the 2007 National Neighborworks Dorthy Richardson Award.
For more about how we build community, click on the links beside the word “Topics” at the top of this page.