Funding Priorities & Strategies
Over the last several years, SFF has been evaluating its impact; reviewing prior grants with Pitt’s Graduate School of Public Health and conducting a strategic plan to implement their recommendations.
In September of 2015, the foundation’s board approved a strategic plan to be phased in over the next three years. The mission is to provide behavioral health grants to nonprofit organizations in ten southwestern Pennsylvania counties will forever remain unchanged. The focus, however, will be on systems based grantmaking: advocacy, communication, innovation, and collaboration.
Proposals using evidence-based models, emphasize best practices, provide measurable outcomes, and eliminate negative stereotypes associated with behavioral illnesses will replace our current population based grantmaking: rural behavioral health, improving access to services for the underserved, and decriminalizing behavioral illnesses. The populations previously identified (access to behavioral health, rural behavioral health, and diversion from the criminal justice system) are still critically important, but the lens in which grant decisions are made will gradually change.
The new priority areas started in 2016 and will be phased in over the next three years. If you are unsure your project fits the Foundation’s strategies, please contact staff. We welcome to hear your ideas and work with your organization to receive funding.
Grants for collaboration with multiple stakeholders to learn/train as a region. SFF will act as a convener and a neutral facilitator.
Examples: Provide funding to new projects which identify unusual partners support; integration of behavioral health; develop trainings that support multiple organizations rather than one; work with local colleges/ universities to develop workforce.
Grants that advance the field and use evidence-based practices* and approaches to improve outcomes.
Examples: Use of technology to advance the behavioral health field/ improve outcome measures; bringing practices to scale across region
Grants promoting policies to improve treatment, especially for underserved populations, and extend the efforts of those supporting and advancing policy change.
Examples: Policy (not lobbying); giving voice to providers and consumers; developing white papers; gathering data to support policy change; educating legislators; convene legislators and nonprofits to discuss behavioral health
Grants to educate the general public about current issues, as well as offer resources to change the conversation about behavioral health.
Examples: Create/share anti-stigma messages to change public perception/policy; provide opportunities for dialogue; build understanding and acceptance; improve practice by disseminating knowledge and promoting a culture of learning