Beginning today, the Health Working Group is now the Healthy Communities Working Group. We changed our name to better reflect our purpose and our work. We want to emphasize that in order to improve health in communities, we not only need to focus on quality healthcare and access to it, but also on the social, economic, and other factors that contribute to overall wellness.
For over 15 years, health funders have convened at the Washington Regional Association of Grantmakers as the Health Working Group. We meet regularly to learn from each other, and to find opportunities to collaborate and align our grantmaking to better support the organizations working to improve the health of all who live in our region. However, we realize that an important part of the community is often missing from the table: funders whose work is critical to the health of our residents and communities but who do not consider themselves to be “health funders.” We recognize that the name “Health Working Group” can give the impression that we focus exclusively on medical care. But medical care is not all there is to creating healthy communities. In fact, it is quite a small part of it, and so we have changed our name to better emulate all of our work.