A Lowcountry group working to improve the region’s health has received a three-year, $450,000 grant from the Duke Endowment to help support the group’s mission.
Healthy Tri-County, established in 2017 by Roper St. Francis Healthcare, Trident United Way and the Medical University of South Carolina, is now one of 20 coalitions in the Carolinas participating in the Duke Endowment’s Health People, Healthy Carolinas initiative.
Healthy People, Healthy Carolinas promotes behavior changes such as nutrition and increased physical activity to address chronic health issues, including unhealthy weight, diabetes and heart disease. The initiative is currently active in more than 15 South Carolina counties, including Greenville, Fairfield, Orangeburg, York and Georgetown.
“The health challenges facing the Carolinas have been decades in the making,” said Lin Hollowell, director of health care at the Duke Endowment. “They cannot be effectively addressed overnight. … The health challenges also cannot be solved by individuals and organizations working alone. Through Healthy People, Healthy Carolinas, communities can work together to confront their problems and make the most progress in achieving solutions.”
Kellye McKenzie, director of health at Trident United Way, said the grant will primarily fund the health program manager position that Trident United Way is in the process of hiring. In addition to coordinating strategies and activities for the Healthy People, Healthy Carolinas program, the health program manager will be responsible for helping implement parts of the Tri-County Health Improvement Plan released by Healthy Tri-County in October.