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Healthy Montana Communities Press Release

Healthy Montana Communities Press Release

The Montana Healthcare Foundation announces $1.8 million in new funding for affordable housing and food projects across Montana.

Bozeman, Mont. (January 31, 2024) – Today, the Montana Healthcare Foundation announced an initial round of funding totaling $1.8 million for nine projects that address local food and affordable housing needs across the state. The funding comes as the Montana Healthcare Foundation announces a long-term commitment to supporting community health by addressing food, housing, and other health-related needs through its new Healthy Montana Communities Initiative.

This funding will contribute to creating and preserving safe, affordable homes, improving access to nutritious, locally-produced foods, and planning resilient, local solutions to address other needs essential to community health and well-being. Rural communities are a primary focus in consideration of the unique challenges they face.

Communities understand their needs best. Through our work with partners across the state and a review of community health assessments and county-level data, we know that housing and food systems are at the top of the list in many Montana communities.

Dr. Aaron Wernham,
Montana Healthcare Foundation CEO

The initiative builds on the Foundation’s work and partnerships throughout Montana and is partly supported by a generous gift from Mackenzie Scott. The Healthy Montana Communities Initiative provides grants, technical assistance, and low-interest loans to support communities in planning and developing economically viable housing and food system projects, emphasizing planning investments that bring partners together to design new projects. All funding is by invitation only, and unsolicited proposals are not accepted.

The first round of food system grantees include the Community Food & Agriculture Coalition, the Montana Partnership to End Childhood Hunger, Hopa Mountain, and the Montana Cooperative Development Center. Housing projects supported by this first round of funding include the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, West Yellowstone Foundation, and One Health in Hardin. The recipients of low-interest loans or “program-related investments” for housing development include United Housing Partners (Twin Creek Apartments), Mitchell Court (Mitchell Court Apartments), and Homeward (Creekside Apartments).

Learn more about the initiative.