Healthier Together Annual Report

Year Three: July 2021-June 2022

healthier together logo Health starts long before illness, in our homes, schools and jobs. Too many children and families in Philadelphia face significant barriers to better health. CHOP started Healthier Together to give every child a chance at a healthy future. In partnership with community residents and community partners, we are addressing health where it starts by creating healthy homes, increasing access to healthy food, overcoming trauma and growing resilience, and achieving financial stability and prosperity. The Office of Community Impact oversees CHOP’s $25 million Healthier Together Initiative. A brief description of all Healthier Together programming is available here.

Quick Facts

  • $10 million invested in the community
  • 13,450 individuals served with 21 partners and collaborators
  • $3,840 back to families on average through financial counseling and tax prep
  • 136 homes renovated to reduce asthma triggers
  • 45,570+ healthy meals distributed to families

Creating Healthy Homes

I am so thankful for this phenomenal program, not just for the care my children have received, but even me, as a mom, I’ve never felt more cared for.
- CAPP+ parent
  • APPROACH: Healthy, stable housing is fundamental for child health. With our community partners, Healthier Together improves housing in two ways: through repairs that reduce asthma triggers in the homes of children with severe asthma and by increasing access to legal support for cases related to evictions and housing habitability.
  • IMPACT: Community Asthma Prevention Program Plus (CAPP+) renovated 39 homes this year, bringing the total to 136 homes renovated to date. CHOP’s Family Justice Partnership and a similar community partnership resolved legal needs for 245 families, which included many households facing eviction that avoided disruptive displacement.
  • PARTNERS: Rebuilding Together Philadelphia, Habitat for Humanity, The Enterprise Center, Community Legal Services, CHOP Community Asthma Prevention Program, CHOP Social Work, Rite Aid Healthy Futures, Bank of America

Overcoming Trauma & Growing Resilience

  • before and after Anderson schoolyard, before and after greening. Photo Credit: Trust for Public Land APPROACH: Unaddressed trauma can adversely impact a child’s physical and mental health into adulthood. Through internal collaborations and external partnerships, Healthier Together is working to both reduce exposure to traumatic events like gun violence and provide services that can minimize the impact of trauma on a child’s well-being.
  • IMPACT: Growing Resilience in Teens enrolled 630 children and caregivers in trauma-informed case management and support groups for trauma and loss since the program launched in January 2021. More than 90 staff members at two West Philadelphia schools participated in trauma-informed care and stress reduction workshops. Working with student-led design teams and a minority-owned construction firm, Healthier Together supported a green schoolyard project at Add B. Anderson Elementary School in Cobbs Creek. Anderson’s 460 students and 9,400 nearby residents have access to a comprehensive play space with a track, half-court basketball area, play equipment, picnic tables and rainwater gardens to help manage stormwater runoff. Healthier Together launched Deeply Rooted, a joint initiative between CHOP and Penn Urban Health Lab, to promote health equity and improve safety in West and Southwest Philadelphia. The community-driven program will increase greenspace (with Pennsylvania Horticultural Society serving as the strategic greening intervention partner), offer community activation, and provide nature-based career training for youth and returning citizens.
  • PARTNERS: Uplift Center for Grieving Children, School District of Philadelphia, Trust for Public Land, Netter Center for Community Partnerships at the University of Pennsylvania, Penn Urban Health Lab, Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, CHOP Care Network Primary Care, CHOP Center for Violence Prevention, Mattel Children's Foundation, TD Bank.

Skylar's Story

How One Family Has Been Supported by a Network of Healthier Together Programs

Accessing Healthy Food

  • Junior Block Captain distributing fresh food boxes to neighbors, Photo Credit: Urban Tree Connection Junior Block Captain distributing fresh food boxes to neighbors, Photo Credit: Urban Tree Connection APPROACH: Healthy food is essential to a healthy childhood. Healthier Together and our partners take a comprehensive approach to promote healthy eating through improving food access, providing nutrition education and supporting local food systems.
  • IMPACT: Food Pharmacy 2.0 enrolled 214 CHOP families in its monthly home delivery program, delivered 8,424 pounds of dry food and fresh food produce boxes, and connected 35 families to supplemental financial and food resources. Home Plate + Food Bucks Rx began enrolling student families from early childhood education centers in West Philadelphia. Each family will receive cooking supplies and instruction in preparing healthy foods, as well as prescription food vouchers that can be redeemed for healthy, fresh food at participating local retailers. The Southwest and West Philadelphia Area Growers Network, an urban agricultural collaborative, provided 20 paid internships, harvested and distributed 17,700 pounds of food, installed 80 home and community gardens, and held 54 community food workshops. Finally, Rite Aid Healthy Futures awarded CHOP $232,000 to support existing Healthier Together hunger programs.
  • PARTNERS: The Common Market, Food Connect, Ronald McDonald House, Sankofa Community Farm at Bartram’s Garden, Philadelphia Orchard Project, Urban Tree Connection, The Food Trust, Early Childhood Education Centers, The Garden at Karabots, Rite Aid Healthy Futures, The GIANT Company

Achieving Financial Stability & Prosperity

  • PowerCorpsPHL team member working on an urban farm PowerCorpsPHL team member working on an urban farm APPROACH: Economic inclusion and financial mobility allow households and communities to thrive. Healthier Together works at multiple levels to promote access to financial support services for families, contracts and training for small businesses, and job training for young people.
  • IMPACT: The Medical Financial Partnership engaged with over 500 families to share information about how to access financial empowerment resources. One of those resources is Clarifi, which provided financial counseling to 85 West Philadelphia clients, totaling 198 since the partnership’s launch. On average, clients have built $3,840 savings and improved credit scores by 52 points. PowerCorpsPHL successfully employed and trained 157 participants through its two workforce development programs. Resource Connects — which is partly funded by Healthier Together and provides information about support for food, utilities, transportation, and more – had 2,500 searches for West and Southwest Philadelphia services. A partnership with The Enterprise Center has helped 97 businesses receive Minority/Women-owned Business Enterprise certification. Additionally, Healthier Together made a $1 million contribution to The Enterprise Center’s Innovate Capital Growth Fund, a new for-profit fund, focused exclusively on investing growth equity capital in minority- and women-owned businesses.
  • PARTNERS: Clarifi, Campaign for Working Families,, PowerCorpsPHL, The Enterprise Center, Eastern Minority Supplier Development Council, CHOP Procurement, CHOP Social Work, CHOP Population Health Innovation Team, CHOP Information Services, CHOP General Pediatrics

Sharing Best Practices & Increasing Engagement

Healthier Together aims to raise awareness and increase engagement with our work. We share best practices on process and outcomes via conferences, publications and media.

  • Growing Resilience in Teens was presented externally at the Root Cause Coalition’s 6th Annual National Summit on the Social Determinants of Health and internally at Quality & Safety Day. 
  • Campers from Caring People Alliance enjoy their Field Day that was supported by Healthier Together Campers from Caring People Alliance enjoy their Field Day that was supported by Healthier Together The Journal of Asthma and Clinical Immunology published peer-reviewed research on the impact of CAPP+, authored by Tyra Bryant-Stephens, MD, Medical Director of the Community Asthma Prevention Program and Chief Health Equity Officer at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and colleagues.
  • George Dalembert, MD, MSHP, Director of the Medical Financial Partnership, co-authored an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer encouraging families to take advantage of Pennsylvania’s Keystone Scholars program.
  • Alonzo South, Assistant Vice President of Community Impact, participated in PHILADELPHIA250’s “In the Pursuit…” conversation series to discuss how Healthier Together is building stronger, more sustainable and more equitable communities in West and Southwest Philadelphia.

Healthier Together maintains partnerships throughout the West and Southwest Philadelphia community to ensure our programming is building upon community assets and addressing neighborhood priorities.

  • The Healthier Together Community Advisory Board (CAB) continued to meet quarterly to advise on Healthier Together priorities, programming and communications. The CAB includes 14 members who live, work, volunteer, worship and/or study in West and Southwest Philadelphia.
  • Healthier Together sponsored and provided volunteer opportunities with Boys & Girls Clubs (Caring People Alliance) summer camps and University Science Center's FirstHand program, which provides out-of-school time STEM programming and STEM mentorship to West Philadelphia middle and high school students.
  • Healthier Together contributes to the CHOP Research Internship for Scholars and Emerging Scientists (CHOP-RISES) program and helps promote the program in West and Southwest Philadelphia high schools.
  • Healthier Together supported CHOP’s Gun Safety Program to purchase 1,000 gun locks that were distributed, with gun safety education, at CHOP Care Network locations in Philadelphia, the CHOP Emergency Department, and at community events in partnership with the YMCA, the School District of Philadelphia and Moms Demand Action.