Houston social entrepreneurs receive funding to provide access to health care and resources

American Heart Association and BNSF Railroad Foundation Infuse $420,000 to Houston-Area Organizations to Improve Health Disparities

HOUSTON, April 25, 2024 – Celebrating 100 years of lifesaving service, the American Heart Association distributed $420,000 of its social impact funds to three local social enterprises in the metro area of Houston as part of its ongoing efforts to address and sustainably impact social drivers. of health A $1.5 million contribution from the BNSF Railway Foundation supported this first disbursement to local Houston employers from the Association’s Social Impact Funds:

  • Betterleave is a digital health platform that partners with organizations to centralize bereavement care in the workplace to improve access, experience and outcomes for collaborative care and clinical services mental health Coping with the death of a loved one is a major stressor that can negatively affect sleep patterns, exercise habits, diet, and smoking status, all of which are risk factors for heart disease.
  • ProUnitas is a technology platform that works with Title I schools to develop systems that address the basic needs that encompass the social drivers of health. By connecting students with the resources they may need, all children can benefit from a more equitable opportunity to reach their full potential.
  • NextOp connects veterans and military with career opportunities by helping them bridge the gap between military service and applying their diverse skills and talents to private industry seeking diverse and skilled talent. Veterans often find it difficult to translate and transfer the skills acquired during their military service to the private sector, which in turn can lead to underemployment.

“For entrepreneurs and small businesses, a lack of funding can hinder success and growth,” said Heather Butscher, vice president of community impact for the American Heart Association in Houston. “Social Impact Funds provide critical funding to empower community-led organizations to create scalable solutions in the hope that every person has an equal opportunity for a full and healthy life.”

This multi-year financial support established the BNSF Rail Fund which is committed to funding additional opportunities in Southeast Texas through 2025.

“The companies supported by the American Heart Association’s Social Impact Funds reflect the innovation and creativity needed to reduce barriers to health equity and improve the quality of life in local communities,” said Zak Andersen, president of the BNSF Railway Foundation. “The BNSF Rail Fund is committed to ensuring communities thrive, and we look forward to seeing these organizations, and others in Southeast Texas, accelerate their work through this infusion of support.”

Since 2018, the American Heart Association’s Social Impact Funds, including the Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund, have provided financial support to more than 130 for-profit and nonprofit companies that address the factors social key health throughout the country. Social Impact Funds invest in organizations that seek to positively address health equity, access to high-quality health care, food insecurity and economic empowerment, all factors that can profoundly affect cardiovascular health. Social Impact Funds provide capital to help start-ups achieve sustainability, scale and scale locally and nationally.

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About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for public health, and share resources that save lives. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for a century. During 2024, our centenary year, we celebrate our rich 100 years of history and achievements. As we move into our second century of bold discovery and impact, our vision is to advance health and hope for everyone, everywhere. Connect with us at heart.org, Facebook, X or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

For media inquiries:

Katharine Perrow, katharine.perrow@heart.org

Dion Bart, dion.bart@heart.org

For public inquiries: 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721)
heart.org and stroke.org

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Image Source : newsroom.heart.org

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