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Twenty years ago, on Oct. 17, 1997, the organization now known as Interact for Health was born. It set out to be a different kind of regional philanthropy, one determined to do more than sign checks.
It would conduct community surveys to identify needs, and it would put knowledgeable program officers in charge of addressing them. It would adopt businesslike procedures for requesting funds and establish measurable outcomes for grantees. It would invest in innovation.
Two decades later, we look back proudly at our work promoting health-care access and healthy living in 20 counties around Cincinnati. We've introduced school-based health centers, unlocked the economic benefits of Medicaid expansion, funded trails and alternative transportation, led the fight against opioid-related deaths, and helped change the justice system's treatment of the mentally ill. We couldn't have done these things without our many partners who want to improve the health of all people in the Cincinnati area, just as we do.
But there is still work to be done. As we begin our third decade, we seek to make an even larger impact by focusing on eliminating key barriers to better health in our region: tobacco use, the opioid epidemic and healthcare for low-income children. Through these efforts, we will continue our efforts to make Cincinnati the healthiest region of the country.
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