Grantee Spotlight

Grantee Spotlight

Welcome to the Grantee Spotlight section of Interact for Health's website. Here we will periodically share the stories of grantees who are improving the health of people in the Cincinnati region.

More school-based health centers open in area schools

As another school year begins, Interact for Health is excited about the launch of new and renewed services at school-based health centers (SBHCs) in our region. Interact funded the planning and implementation of these SBHCs.

Marilyn Crumpton of Growing Well (from left), Brook Gumm of Crossroads Health Center, Francie Wolgin of Interact for Health, Rothenberg Principal Amber Simpson, Dr. Robert Siegel of Children's Hospital and resource coordinator Barbara Bell celebrate the opening of Rothenberg's SBHC.

The Rothenberg Preparatory Academy SBHC in Cincinnati's Over-the-Rhine neighborhood held its official grand opening Aug. 16. It had been open for a few weeks in May. At that time, the center saw about four children a day, according to Brook Gumm, Certified Pediatric Nurse Practitioner with Crossroads Health Center, which operates the center. The Aug. 16 ceremony also marked the opening of Cincinnati Children's Hospital's Center for Better Health and Nutrition Clinic. The SBHC can refer four children each month to the clinic, which offers treatment for overweight and obese children involving the whole family, said Dr. Robert Siegel, the center's medical director.

Interact Senior Program Officer Francie Wolgin addresses attendees at the Aug. 22 reopening ceremony.

The SBHC in Adams County has a new medical partner and a new name: Valley View Health Centers at the Manchester School Campus. The SBHC will provide medical, dental and vision care to students, school personnel, their families and the community. Superintendent Craig Hockenberry told a crowd of about 50 at the Aug. 22 reopening ceremony that the center had already received 700 consent forms from parents after being open only seven days.

"Nothing's more important than kids being in school." said Ron Ruddick, Ohio State Board of Education member. Health is "the rock that we build their future on."

An examination room at the new Mount Airy SBHC.

Finally, the Mount Airy Elementary School SBHC opened Aug. 22. The Cincinnati Health Department operates the latest SBHC in Cincinnati Public Schools. Primary care and mental health services will be offered onsite to the school's nearly 600 students. SBHC clinicians also will perform vision screenings and refer students to the OneSight Vision Center at Oyler School in Lower Price Hill if they need glasses. They will also provide dental screenings and refer students to the CincySmiles mobile dental van or health department dental clinics.

Since 1999 Interact for Health, working with a broad coalition of health, education and civic partners, has funded 30 SBHCs in nine school districts serving 28,000 students in Greater Cincinnati.


First up, the Northern Kentucky Regional Mental Health Court. A three-year grant awarded to the Northern Kentucky University Research Foundation created a regional mental health court to serve Boone, Kenton and Campbell counties. It diverted mentally ill people from jail, improved their health and saved money. Read more here.


Shawnee Mental Health Center is the only provider offering a full array of mental health services in Ohio's rural Adams, Lawrence and Scioto counties. A three-year grant from the Health Foundation enabled Shawnee to offer physical healthcare services to its mental health clients. Because of the new services, participants’ health has improved, and fewer smoke or use the emergency room for physical healthcare. Shawnee’s success helped it win a four-year $2 million grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to expand its integrated care program. Read the full Grantee Spotlight here.


Our latest Grantee Spotlight highlights the work of Sojourner Recovery Services, a provider of drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs in Hamilton, Ohio. Sojourner sought ways to help clients deal with anxiety and drug cravings in the first weeks of treatment that can cause patients to abandon treatment after only a few weeks. Seeking a way to retain more clients, Sojourner decided to add a nontraditional practice to its residential program: ear acupuncture. Clients reported fewer drug cravings and reduced anxiety and more clients completed the program. Read the full Grantee Spotlight here.

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