Advocate Aurora Health gives $675,000 in grants to develop a diverse health care workforce

The Better Together Fund’s next recipients seek to train health care workers amidst COVID-19

Milwaukee, Wis. – Advocate Aurora Health is awarding grants to four community organizations from its Better Together Fund to help improve the health care workforce. The latest grants are part of a $2,125,000 commitment to Milwaukee projects that address social and economic needs amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pandemic has aimed a spotlight on health care inequities, and the next group of grant recipients’ projects are focused on creating more diversity and inclusivity among caregivers. The grant recipients are:

  • Milwaukee Jobs Work – Pathways to Healthcare Careers Program
    • $200,000 to expand job skills development and tutoring programs for central Milwaukee city residents with limited work histories and significant barriers to long-term, successful employment.
  • Cream City Medical Society/Milwaukee Health Services – Pipeline to Practice
    • $200,000 to provide seed funding for the Physician Recruitment Scholarship Fund, a key component of the Pathways to Practice program for African American physician development.
  • Wisconsin Area Health Education Center – Community Health Workers Training Program Expansion
    • $200,000 to develop a virtual community health workers training program and provide one-on-one coaching/mentoring for an additional six months to further hone skills and provide career support services.
  • Hispanic Collaborative – Rapid Cohort Upskilling Model
    • $75,000 to recruit Latinos into a bilingual certified nursing assistant training program.

“COVID-19 has amplified the disproportionate impact illness can have on people simply because of the zip code in which they live. These programs will not only help remove barriers to a career in health care, but also create a workforce more reflective of the communities they serve, encouraging more individuals to seek care when it’s needed,” Chief External Affairs Officer Cristy Garcia-Thomas said.

The Better Together Fund is a one-time funding commitment to develop critical services in Milwaukee. Community groups from across Milwaukee were invited to submit proposals.

Five additional community programs focusing on minority business owners, education and support services have already received grants from the Better Together Fund. They include:

  • Hispanic Collaborative – MercadoMKE

$250,000 to support and increase the number of Hispanic-owned businesses with an online presence and sales platform.

  • African American Chamber of Commerce – RISE MKE Entrepreneurial Training Program

$250,000 to support African American-owned businesses with training and technical support to develop e-commerce business and other strategies.

  • Sigma Pi Phi Beta Alpha Boulé/Marquette University Center for Peacemaking – Building Resiliency in Classroom Education

$250,000 to deliver support services for students struggling with mental health, academic and/or behavioral challenges.

  • UMOS – Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Program

$125,000 to fund advocacy services for Hispanic sexual assault and domestic violence survivors.

  • The Asha Project – Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Program

$125,000 to fund advocacy services for African American sexual assault and domestic violence survivors.

The Better Together Fund is managed by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation.


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