Celebrating a year of growth: Texas health coalitions forge ahead with renewed purpose

EHF wraps up the latest cohort of the Collaborating for Healthy Communities Initiative.

After a year-long journey of finding shared purpose and becoming more effective in their communities, five health collaboratives from across Texas gathered in Houston to celebrate their achievements as a peer learning network.  

The gathering – themed around connection, reflection, and celebration – marked the end of a 12-month capacity-building investment that is part of EHF’s Collaborating for Healthy Communities Initiative (CHCI). It’s designed to enhance the  efforts of coalitions working to advance health in their communities. The five coalitions in this year’s CHCI cohort are working in neighborhoods and geographies within Galveston, Houston, and Waco.

“A year ago, these groups started as passionate organizations in coalitions wanting to improve their teamwork and deepen impact,” says Roosevelt Neely, EHF’s Community Partnerships Officer. “Today, they embody the principles of shared leadership, working strategically, and thinking sustainably. The support of their coaches and the value of the peer learning network has propelled them to accomplish everything they set out to do.”

Tilman J. Fertitta Family College of Medicine, Third Ward Partners Supporting a Healthier Community

See the featured article from the University of Houston about the Third Ward Community Health Collaborative's participation in EHF's CHCI cohort.
This is EHF’s second CHCI cohort since launching the initiative in 2021. The Foundation’s goal is to help organizations within coalitions and multi-sector collaboratives build their capacity to work collaboratively and effectively with a practical, real-world lens they can then apply to their specific context.
“These trainings have helped us learn about tools that can be applied to shared governance and decision-making,” said Linda Civallero, Director of Community Outreach for the University of Houston’s Tilman J. Fertitta Family College of Medicine and member of the Third Ward Community Health Collaborative. “We’re receiving lots of information, resources and tools. Now, it’s time to implement what we’ve learned as partners.”

Collaboration is essential for cultivating lasting and systemic change, with an eye toward health equity. EHF’s effort has not only strengthened these coalitions, but has also laid the groundwork for a future where collaborative efforts are at the heart of innovation in community health.

“One of the things that distinguishes EHF as a philanthropy is that we have multiple ways we partner with communities that go beyond grantmaking,” says Dr. Ann Barnes, EHF’s president and CEO. “Some of our most impactful initiatives have resulted from supporting organizations and groups in relationship building and skill development.”

The five coalitions that completed the CHCI cohort are:

  • Galveston County Integrated Care Collaborative

  • Third Ward Community Health Collaborative in Houston

  • Families and Foster Care Coalition in Waco

  • Southwest Houston FaithHealth Collaborative
  • Houston Area Suicide Prevention Coalition
Special thanks to this year’s incredible coaches!
  • Tina Council (I Am Pleased Development Center)
  • Sam Woollard & Andrea Torres (Woollard Nichols Torres Consulting)