Funding Opportunities

May 30, 2024

View the latest grant opportunities from the federal government.

FY 2023 Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly Program

This program provides Capital Advance funding for the development of supportive rental housing for Very-Low-Income persons aged 62 years or older and project rental subsidies in the form of a Project Rental Assistance Contract (PRAC) to maintain ongoing affordability. Program funding totals $115 million, with an award ceiling of $20 million. Closing: June 20, 2024.

FY 2024 Behavioral Health Service Expansion

The Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) expects to award $240 million in FY 2024 and $200 million in FY 2025 to 400 health centers. You may apply for up to $600,000 in year 1, and $500,000 in year 2. HRSA funding will help you increase access to behavioral health services. You can start or expand mental health and substance use disorder (SUD) services. Apply via HRSA Electronic Handbooks (EHBs) by 5 p.m. ET on June 21, 2024.

DOL Stand Down Grants
Provides funding for events that offer homeless veteran populations a variety of social services designed to help them to reintegrate into their communities, such as housing, healthcare, and employment opportunities.  Closing: Sept. 30, 2024.

USDA Summer Food Service Program
Funding to provide free, nutritious meals and snacks to help children in low-income areas get the nutrition they need during the summer months. Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.

Crisis Counseling Assistance and Training Program (CCP)
The CCP is a short-term disaster relief grant for states, U.S. territories, and federally recognized tribes. CCP grants are awarded after a presidential disaster declaration. CCP funding supports community-based outreach, counseling, and other mental health services to survivors of natural and human-caused disasters. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

Emergency Community Water Assistance Grants
This program helps eligible communities prepare, or recover from, an emergency that threatens the availability of safe, reliable drinking water. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

Find more national, regional and federal funding opportunities from our partners at GrantStation Insider and sign up for our weekly GrantStation newsletter.

Taking Action to Advance Housing Solutions

April 30, 2024

To build on the work of our network to advance housing solutions in communities across the country, Lutheran Services in America is supporting the federal expansion of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC). Provisions in pending legislation represent what would be the largest single investment in affordable housing in decades.

Earlier this year, the House passed with strong bipartisan support the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act of 2024 (H.R. 7024), which includes key provisions to expand LIHTC. Action has moved to the Senate, and we are asking you to contact your senators and urge them to pass this legislation to better address our nation’s housing crisis by meeting critical, urgent needs that have been under-resourced.

If passed, this bipartisan legislation will expand and strengthen LIHTC by financing the construction or preservation of an estimated 200,000 additional affordable housing units nationwide, generating more than $34 billion in wages and business income, supporting over 304,000 jobs, and generating almost $12 billion in federal, state, and local tax revenue.

We hope you will join us in raising our collective voice on this urgent issue. If you have any questions, please contact Sarah Dobson.

Sarah Dobson is Senior Director of Public Policy and Advocacy at Lutheran Services in America.

Results Network: A Journey to Transform Communities by Cultivating Caring Communities

September 28, 2023

Our Results Network cohort, a part of our Results Innovation Lab, is a dynamic nine-month learning collaborative that brings together leaders from across the Lutheran Services in America network to explore and innovate new strategies and approaches that will reshape how we engage children and families, with a specific focus on racial justice.

Thanks to a new partnership between Lutheran Services in America and the ELCA, grassroots faith-based ELCA church-led organizations and congregations have joined our 2023–2024 cohort to help us answer the question: “What will it take to stabilize families in their communities, ensuring families remain intact, and children do not enter out-of-home care?”

The Results Network is designed to accelerate innovative approaches, revamp how we engage families in crisis, and create pathways to keep families together, especially children, youth, and families who are over-represented in the child welfare system.

This proven approach has produced tremendous results in past years, and we believe that this year’s cohort will contribute immensely to our efforts, having already reached over 25,000 children and families in our Lab to date.

Organizations that have joined this transformative journey will have the opportunity to:

  • Access expertise from across the network and national thought leaders.
  • Become part of a learning community through the exchange of ideas and learning, building lasting, supportive relationships within the network.
  • Develop new approaches to achieve results and engage partners in moving the work forward.
  • Challenge the status quo and identify barriers to improving equitable outcomes for children, youth, and families.

Throughout the year, participants will create results-driven action plans through a step-by-step process by delving into key themes, incorporating and amplifying lived expertise, and utilizing plain language to engage a wider audience in addressing disparities. They will also examine and pursue opportunities to shift policies, practices, resources, and power structures all aimed at supporting and sustaining equitable outcomes for children, youth, and families. The goal is for each organization to consistently achieve measurable and impactful advancements by increasing equitable access to supports and strengthening community networks through a racial equity lens, advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion as a social norm.

Stay tuned for more information on this incredible journey of impact and transformation.

Renada Johnson is Senior Director of Children, Youth and Family Initiatives at Lutheran Services in America.

SNF Minimum Staffing Standard Published: Tell CMS How New Mandate will Impact your SNFs and Access to Care

September 11, 2023

On September 1, the Biden Administration officially published for public comment a proposed rule that would mandate minimum staffing levels at skilled nursing facilities. A 60-day comment period began September 6 and will end with all comments due on November 6.

Lutheran Services in America will be submitting comments sharing our concerns about the proposed new requirement and helping you do the same. We are currently analyzing the full rule and what it means for our network, but our initial concerns include the 24/7 RN requirement, only allowing time-limited hardship exemption waivers, and lack of funding for implementing mandated staffing increases.

Since early 2022 when the Administration originally announced their intent to mandate minimum staffing levels, we have heard from many of you that the uniform application of this new requirement, on top of the enduring workforce shortage in direct care, will result in reduced access to long-term care for older adults in rural and underserved communities as providers continue to struggle to fill staffing vacancies. We have worked diligently to ensure that the concerns of our network are heard and incorporated into the new rule, including meetings with key senators, the White House Domestic Policy Council, and CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure.

Our collective voice is powerful, and we look forward to continuing to bring its impact to bear on this rule.

Sarah Dobson is the Senior Director of Public Policy and Advocacy at Lutheran Services in America.

The Courage to Come Together

August 30, 2023

Lutheran Services in America is currently seeking grassroots, faith-based organizations and initiatives affiliated with an ELCA church or community to join our 2023–2024 Results Network cohort, which starts September 28. Participation is free. The Results Network is a transformative opportunity for teams to advance racial equity for children and families in a high-support and high-accountability hybrid cohort experience. Participants work in fields as varied as child welfare, housing and economic empowerment, but are united by the goals of preventing or stabilizing families in crisis, strengthening communities and addressing racial disparities. Learn more about this opportunity and how to join.

Five years ago, I hit a wall professionally. I was exhausted by a four-year effort to transform an early childhood organization in Indiana and questioning my ability to lead teams. I did something that felt scary. With a second child on the way, I took a professional role with a lot less pay, but the flexibility to join a virtual cohort of changemakers I had long eyed as an opportunity to reinvigorate and refresh my purpose and my skills in advocacy and organizing.

The cohort, which was university-organized and crossed global boundaries, was a transformative experience that gave me the space to learn and safely practice new skills. One of my closest cohort relationships was with a young person working to create a new political party in Eastern Europe. We explored common challenges and solutions, despite our disparate focus areas. We provided each other candid, but empathetic coaching. I found my skill set growing exponentially, almost day-to-day. When the cohort ended, I used my new skills—and new energy—to grow a campaign to end smoking related death and illness in Indiana to 10,000 advocates.

Professional cohorts are amazing vehicles for change, in part because the act of joining one is motivated by courage. Courage to put yourself into a new and unfamiliar community. Courage to admit you need to grow professionally. Courage to explore what it means to move from the transactional (most of our day-to-day work, often by necessity) to the transformational.

I’m honored that Lutheran Services in America is host to the Results Network—a powerful annual cohort of child and family-serving organizations working toward transformative outcomes rooted in a focus on race equity.

In the past year, 41 Lutheran social ministry leaders across 10 U.S. communities took the courageous act of joining the Results Network and working through professional challenges. The results at the end of the year? Transformative change for over 8,300 children and families!

In coming together, participants in the Results Network—who work in teams of three—make the courageous commitment to:

  • Be results-based and data-driven
  • Bring attention to and act on disparities
  • Use oneself as an instrument of change to move a result
  • Master the skills of adaptive leadership
  • Collaborate with others

When these commitments are made and supported by the cohort’s facilitation and coaching, transformation happens. Here are just a few of the remarkable results from last year’s cohort:

  • Lutheran Social Services of New York witnessed a 13% decrease in the length of stay for Black youth in foster care, demonstrating their commitment to addressing disparities.
  • Gemma Services’ (Pennsylvania) initiative to establish adolescent and father peer-support groups provided vital support to youth and families, empowering them to access resources, navigate systems and feel less isolated.
  • Lutheran Child and Family Services of Illinois achieved a remarkable milestone with 72% of their foster youth successfully reunified with their families, a 50% improvement in the past year through a renewed dedication to strengthening families and emphasizing reunification rather than adoption or guardianship.
  • Lutheran Social Services of Southern California implemented changes to electronic records and diligent search efforts to engage Black fathers and paternal resources which yielded positive outcomes.

One of the amazing elements of the Results Network cohort is the integration of peer leadership. In the most recent cohort, six diverse peer leaders were engaged to formally share their expertise, coaching and guidance.

The coming year of Results Network—which begins September 28—holds such high promise. Through a partnership with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), we are thrilled to welcome grassroots, faith-based organizations and initiatives affiliated with an ELCA church or community to join, contribute and transform. Their courageous work and presence will deepen and expand the experiences, expertise and diversity of the Results Network, yielding unexplored results. I cannot wait to see what results emerge from this coming together of the Lutheran Services in America and ELCA communities!

If you are a grassroots, faith-based organization or initiative affiliated with an ELCA church or community that is interested in joining this year’s Results Network, please take a moment to learn more about participation and reach out to Renada Johnson, Senior Director of Child, Youth and Family Initiatives (rjohnson@lutheranservices.org).

Onward, together, with courage!

Kent Mitchell is the Vice President of Strategy and Innovation at Lutheran Services in America.

Looking at Employee Benefits Through the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Lens

August 25, 2023

You work hard to do what’s right — and do right by the broadest set of people.

It can be such a challenge keeping track of all the benefits and creative perks today’s workforce demands! What do employees want most: Flexibility? Better benefits? Robust mental health support? Did you ever think inclusiveness would top the list?

Consider the experience of an employee who is a victim of recent racial trauma, showing up for a video therapy session with a white therapist. Or an employee who needs a flexible schedule to fulfill responsibilities at home like caring for a disabled dependent. Is your organization adequately addressing the needs of an ever-evolving workforce?

The Evolution of Diversity Dialogue

Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) is a hot topic for good reason. As you can imagine, DEI’s roots dig deep in the civil rights movement of the 1960s. Over many decades it has come to inspire conversations not only on diversity in race, but also gender and gender identities, life experiences, income levels, religious backgrounds, ages and stages of life, languages, and household family structures.

The May 2020 injustice of George Floyd’s arrest and consequential death, and the innumerable tragedies since then have amplified Americans’ awareness of the injustices around them. With this new awareness, many Americans look to their employers to take more action.

Where DEI and Benefits Collide

DEI intersects with everything that you’ve promised employees to care for their well-being.

So, you’ve successfully built a dynamic, diverse workforce. Benefits packages have been regularly updated with recruiting and retention in mind. But have you conducted a DEI audit lately?

Diversity experts will tell you that looking through the DEI lens more carefully at your employee benefits materials, policies and procedures, facilities, special events, and other employee-centered programs and perks should be a routine, ongoing effort.

Think about the importance of making health coverage, comfortable workspaces, leaves of absence, mental health support, and flexible schedules available to all on an equal level. Sounds straightforward, but it turns out, it can be all too easy to miss the mark for at least one subgroup of employees. The key is making a concerted effort to regularly review DEI efforts and your progress and grow in your knowledge of where gaps exist.

You can’t satisfy every need 100% of the time, but it’s important to start somewhere. Small but intentional changes can go a long way to convey an organization’s sensitivity and commitment to responding to employees’ needs with care. Consider how you can engage with employees to better understand what’s most important to them.

To ramp up inclusivity and equity efforts in the workplace, potential next steps might include:

  • Examining equal opportunity: Do your professional development and educational assistance programs provide equal opportunity to all regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, position, and income level?
  • Meeting accessibility needs: Where virtual engagement is possible or expected, are you meeting the technology needs of all interested employees? For example, telemedicine meets people where they are, day or night. On the topic of remote work and flexibility, have you thought of all of the employee groups that could benefit: disabled, commuters, semi-retired, working parents, and caregivers, to name a few?
  • Acknowledging modern households and couples: Understand that a “traditional family” is a thing of the past. Do you adequately support today’s diverse family structures, which may include employees and their dependents, aging parents, adopted or foster children, and same-sex spouses?

This is just the tip of the iceberg! Sometimes, in a rush to meet the growing needs of one employee population, we miss the mark with another. Dissecting the needs of a multigenerational workforce, the World Economic Forum offers this perspective:

  • Gen Z: Social issues matter, employer values should align with their own; concerned about well-being and mental health; desire dialogue but may prefer digital over face-to-face.
  • Millennials: Early adopters of remote work, appreciate flexibility; in the process of building families, so health insurance, parental leave, childcare, and fertility benefits are top of mind; looking to pay off student loan debt.
  • Gen X: Mid to late career with kids at home or transitioning to empty nesters; the generation most likely to care for dependents and aging parents simultaneously, so affordable health insurance, flexibility, and dependent care assistance are important.
  • Baby Boomers: Retired or nearing retirement, aging, and possibly facing health issues for selves or partner; value traditional benefits and affordability is key.1

Commit to the Cause

Don’t let your organization’s dedication to DEI lapse, no matter what events or distractions lie ahead. The greatest impact comes from ongoing effort. Successful DEI initiatives can set you up for:

  • Increased employee engagement and satisfaction
  • Higher retention, lower turnover
  • A more diverse pool of candidates
  • Better decision-making2

Some tactics you may consider to stay on track:

  • Make sure messaging at every level communicates diversity and inclusiveness as core values, and promotes the benefits of a synergy that comes from integrating people of many backgrounds;
  • Continue investing in diversity training and education for decision makers, HR professionals, and any staff in leadership positions at the facility level;
  • Send out regular reminders about benefits offerings to ensure they’re being used;
  • Host listening sessions with employees who have an ear to the ground and can share real stories from the sidelines about those feeling underrepresented or underserved by benefits;
  • Develop a means for measuring organizational progress on DEI initiatives.

All employees want to be seen.

Remember, to retain your best employees and attract new people, it’s important to remain committed to cultivating a warm, welcoming environment. Be well-intentioned, flexible, and ready for unexpected shifts in workforce demands. Above all, make diversity, inclusion, and equity a driving force at every level of your organization for a richer, more sustainable future.

 

Learn more about Portico Benefit Services.

1Chen, Jacklyn (2022). Here’s How to Tailor Employee Benefits to a Diverse Workforce. World Economic Forum. Retrieved January 25, 2023, from https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2022/09/employee-benefits-diversity/

2Diversity Equity and Inclusion: Why it Matters. St. Bonaventure University. Retrieved January 26, 2023, from https://online.sbu.edu/news/why-dei-matters

Forward-looking Approaches Toward Health Equity

August 10, 2023

Recently, I had the privilege to speak with Lutheran Services in America members about how they approach achieving health equity in their communities. Recognizing the challenges community members face with housing and food insecurity, lack of transportation, challenges receiving behavioral health care, and loneliness and social isolation (also known as social determinants of health (SDOH)), five members of the Coalition for Better Social Care shared innovative and promising solutions. Thanks to their groundbreaking approaches, more than 11,000 people have been screened for SDOH risks. Their efforts laid the groundwork for reaching more people, identifying their needs, and providing the services and supports that help community members live independently and thrive.

Source: Amanda Krzykowski, LSS Wisconsin

 

Below is a snapshot of the conversation with:

Watch the full conversation.

Source: Amanda Krzykowski, LSS Wisconsin

 

A key insight offered was to integrate screenings for social determinants of health during regular interactions with program participants. While screenings are often conducted during initial interactions, needs can change over time. Updated information can help tailor programs to current needs, use resources more effectively, allow more people to receive services, and better connect people with appropriate services to support their specific needs.

For example:

  • Lutheran Family Services of Nebraska shared that for a variety of factors, older adults were resistant to utilizing their behavioral health services. Staff started meeting residents where they were – in the dining facilities, at group activities – rather than scheduling formal appointments. Using relationship-building questions to initiate conversations, they earned the trust of the older adults which grew into identifying needs and providing appropriate behavioral health services.
  • Genacross Lutheran Services in Toledo, Ohio, suggested integrating facilities staff, who interact frequently with residents, into regular care planning meetings. Now, the facilities staff are key partners in identifying other services and support needed. A request to “just change a light bulb” expanded into a realization the resident had trouble getting out of their chair and might need medical attention.
  • Family Health Centers at NYU Langone is implementing new protocols when residents return home from the hospital (known as transitional care), conducting a targeted SDOH screening to identify the unique needs after hospitalization such as home care, transportation to medical appointments, and meal assistance.

During our conversation, members emphasized that addressing SDOH needs is the pathway to health equity. Lutheran Social Services of Illinois Director Matt Hammoudeh summarized: “Without stable and secure housing and other basic needs met, program participants struggle to focus on health matters such as doctor’s appointments and filling prescriptions.”

Our network excels at innovation in the face of challenging situations. Members of the Coalition for Better Social Care are seeking more reliable sources of funding to provide program sustainability, such as Medicaid reimbursements and contracts with health insurers. The mechanisms for reimbursement are still emerging, such as the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Service’s recently proposed Physician Fee Schedule that includes SDOH reimbursements under Medicare, and new partnerships are needed to scale services. Going forward, we will be convening thought leadership on reimbursement mechanisms and enabling conditions leading to partnerships with health insurers and others.

 

We invite you to join your peers to advance health equity: Susan Newton, Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives at Lutheran Services in America, will guide you to a Collaborative that best fits your strategic direction.

For more information, watch our Strength & Service Series webinar “Swap Shop: Innovative Strategies Across the Network to Address Social Determinants of Health.

Looking for more information on social determinants of health? This easy-to-print graphic details what SDOH are and why they are important. We encourage you to utilize this resource and share it within your respective communities and organizations!

 

Grounding our Work in the Lives of Families

June 13, 2023

Participating members of our Family Stabilization Initiative united in Seattle to discuss how to raise the visibility and support the sustainability of our work to engage 580 families in crisis in Alaska, Montana, South Dakota and Washington state. Through this cohort—part of our Results Innovation Lab—we activate community networks to address the disproportionate number of children of color separated from their families. Key to our success are our valued partners. By building a broad base of support, we are expanding supports in underserved communities that empower families to stay together.

For three days, member collaborated on approaches for sharing our story to engage community partners, evaluated the impacts of the collaborative learning model on implementation and sustainability, focused on the urgency to engage families in crisis and reviewed best practices to support key components of sustainability. Cohort members also shared marketing and outreach materials with each other to spark ideas for raising the visibility of their programs and engaging key community stakeholders in this work to reach more families.

Through this close interaction in such a collaborative setting, the Family Stabilization Initiative is generating the momentum needed to make a quantifiable difference for leaders in their communities and incentivizing additional partners to join us in this work. The cohort challenges participants to step into the shoes of the families with whom they engage to provide additional perspective on their experiences.

Several of our partners joined us for the convening:

  • Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago facilitated collaborative breakout discussions around the seven components of sustainability—leadership capacity, equity, program fidelity, staffing, referrals, investment and community partnerships—for cohort members to share valuable insights on their successes and challenges as it relates to each component. Chapin Hall is committed to improving the well-being of children, youth, families and communities, dedicated to equity, and charged to create child welfare resources, practices, and policies that prioritize family support and prevention.
  • Evans & Associates discussed asset-based storytelling to promote learning, sharing and telling our story and the stories of our families to engage people and the community in this work. The group provides an equity lens to storytelling through aspirational communications that amplifies the impacts of mission-related causes, initiatives and organizations.
  • Our evaluation partner Wilder Research led an interactive session, “Ripple Effects Mapping,” to visually capture the impacts of the Results Innovation Lab over the course of the three-year initiative in building the capacity of the targeted four states to address racial inequities in local child welfare through prevention and to sustain the evidenced-based model beyond three years.
  • Our partners at the National Center for Innovation and Excellence (NCFIE) organized a session around the urgency to engage families that are in crisis and best practices for family engagement and follow-up.
  • Sheila Weber of Homegrown Strategies led a diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) session focused on managing stress and building resiliency as well as a group brainstorming and problem-solving session focused on a specific dilemma one team is facing. Fellow cohort members were able to offer questions, expertise and ideas for tackling this challenge within their respective communities.

Collectively, we’re spearheading approaches that build on the strengths of families in ways we could not do on our own. When we come together, we create new pathways—and hope—for people and communities across the country.

 

Renada Johnson is the Director of Children, Youth and Families and Elizabeth Vetter is a Program Associate at Lutheran Services in America.

President and Congress Agree to Deal Suspending the Debt Limit, Making Other Federal Spending Changes

June 6, 2023

On May 28, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and President Joe Biden released the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023, legislation to suspend the debt limit until January 1, 2025. The bill marked the culmination of weeks of negotiation between the two sides to agree on a way to suspend the debt limit and include other legislative provisions as well. Not included in the deal was a provision that had been discussed to increase administrative barriers to Medicaid participation via increased work requirements and reporting, which Lutheran Services in America had opposed.

The package passed the House of Representatives on May 31 by a bipartisan vote of 314 to 117 and the Senate on June 1 by a vote of 63 to 36. The President signed the bill into law on June 3, narrowly avoiding the June 5 deadline when the Treasury Department had indicated the United States would no longer be able to pay all of its bills.

Key elements of the legislation of interest to our network include:

  • Cap in spending: The bill will cap federal defense and non-defense spending for fiscal years 2024 and 2025, with non-defense spending receiving the greater share of the reduction. The deal will reduce those caps by another percentage in the event Congress does not pass appropriations bills to fund the government by January 1, 2024 and January 1, 2025, respectively.
  • New time limits and work requirements for SNAP and TANF:
    • The bill includes new, additional time limits for able-bodied adults without children (ABAWDs) receiving benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP,) formerly known as food stamps. Current law subjects ABAWDs 18–49 years old to a three-month limit every three years for getting food assistance unless they can prove they are working 20 hours a week or 80 hours a month. The new law expands this requirement up to the age of 54. The bill does provide full work requirement exemptions for veterans, people experiencing homelessness, and those aging out of foster care.
    • The bill expands work requirements under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. First, the legislation creates a new pilot program in up to five states for six years to measure “work outcomes” (as opposed to existing work participation rates) and requires the states and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to negotiate metrics and targets. The legislation further requires that all states measure “work outcomes,” including employment and earnings. It is unclear how the states would administer this change. The bill also makes changes to the caseload reduction credit (which states can receive by decreasing the number of individuals receiving TANF relative to a fixed metric) in a way that could result in families being removed from the program entirely.
  • Rescission of unspent COVID-19 funds: The bill will take back approximately $30 billion of COVID-19 aid that federal agencies received through multiple COVID-19 relief bills but had not yet spent.
  • End of student loan repayment pause: The bill will end the student loan payment pause, requiring borrowers to begin repayment 60 days after June 30. This section also prohibits the Secretary of Education from taking any action to extend the current student loan pause absent express Congressional authorization.

Sarah Dobson is the Senior Director of Public Policy and Advocacy at Lutheran Services in America.

Your Voice Charts our Future

May 9, 2023

How can we maximize the value of this amazing network is a question we are asking. Like many of you, we are reevaluating our strategy and your perspectives shape the future of this network. You are sharing your visions of how collectively we can respond in ways that strengthen our communities and hold true to our collective mission of empowering people to lead their best lives.

After a thorough search, we engaged Collective Action Lab to guide us in this exploration. We are evaluating our capabilities and constraints: what we do well, what we need to stop doing and how we need to evolve. We have met with over 55 different groups to inform our strategy—some virtually, some in person—including Lutheran social ministry leaders, board members and current and future partners. As part of these conversations, we are examining the impact of near-term trends and future disrupters on our work together.

Our listening sessions identified a multitude of challenges and opportunities including workforce and changing demographics, inadequate public financing and reimbursement, trauma and fatigue in your communities, evolving models of care, organizational rightsizing, downsizing and consolidation, the need for affordable housing, and the impact of technology.

Your voice charts our future. You are sharing ways that you value coming together to strengthen our collective capacity to lead, amplify our unified, faith-based voice and catalyze innovation. United in our shared purpose and faith tradition of social ministry, our strategy work explores how we continue to evolve to meet the ever-changing needs of our communities.

Over the summer we will continue to build out our strategy and solicit input and perspective. Stay tuned!

 

Alesia Frerichs is President & CEO of Lutheran Services in America.