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Essentia Health-St. Joseph's Foundation awards $12,000 in Community Health grants

Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Foundation is able to impact the lives of our patients, staff and community through good stewardship by recently awarding $12,000 in four Community Health Initiative Grants.

The Breezy Point Police Department received $5,500 for the purchase of an Automated CPR Device for use by the paramedic trained staff employed by the city of Breezy Point as police officers.

“The addition of the Automated CPR Device to the responding Paramedic Officer’s equipment has allowed for longer duration of quality compressions. This also frees the officer to begin airway management, install an IV and begin drug therapy. Coupled with defibrillation this gives a patient the best chance of surviving a cardiac arrest,” said Kevin Merschman, police chief, Breezy Point Police Department, in a news release.

Lakes Area Restorative Justice Project received $5,000 to address prevention and intervention for juveniles who involve themselves in potentially harmful behaviors that could lead to criminal charges and to provide support for them to change their behaviors.

“This grant will allow our program to continue to provide our restorative justice services to the victims and community members harmed by juvenile offenders in Crow Wing County. It will also allow us to expand into underserved areas addressing bullying and harassment as well as victims of more serious offenders not normally referred to our program, through the court system. Thank you.” said Janet Wedan, administrative assistant of Lakes Area Restorative Justice Project.

Confidence Learning Center received $1,000 funding for Rendezvous, a program which educates people with developmental disabilities on ways to be healthy and active by teaching leisure skills and basic wellness through interactive outdoor programming.

Crosslake Lutheran Church received $500 to support their Kids Summer Fitness Program whose goal is to promote physical activity in the K-6th grade population during the summer months.

Gail Smith, Parish registered nurse, Crosslake Lutheran Church reported she is encouraged 40 of the 60 children in the parish are participating in the Kids Summer Fitness Program. “The grant not only supports kids fitness but benefits the entire family as they spend more time together being active.”

The St. Joseph’s Foundation Board of Directors reviews grant applications six times annually. Applications must focus on community needs in the Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center and Clinics service area, be submitted by nonprofits or governmental agencies and meet outlined criteria. Those interested in applying for a grant from Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Foundation, may find more information and a grant application at or by calling 828-7564.

The next deadline for applications for Community Health Initiative grants is Aug. 1. Applicants will be notified within 60 days.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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