Before the first Healthier Together community was formally launched, foundation board, staff and committee members, with the support of expert consultants, worked together to develop a framework for Healthier Together.
"The Theory of Change”
Framing the change we want to see and how we’re going to get there.
Developing a theory of change provided justification for the new grantmaking strategy and served as a roadmap for the work. The Theory of Change in the early years guided the launch of the overall initiative and outlined the depth of the foundation’s commitment as well as the anticipated changes in the communities.
A Dynamic Document
A Theory of Change framework is meant to be a dynamic document. The Healthier Together Theory of Change was revised four years into the initiative to reflect a deeper knowledge of the work and the foundation’s renewed commitment amidst changing strategies and goals in the communities.
The foundation’s original Theory of Change was rooted in clinically based approaches to health such as looking for decreases in diabetes rates over a five-year period. Over time, the foundation realized that these measures did not align with the work. The current Theory of Change moves from community change rooted in clinically-based approaches to a holistic approach emphasizing systems and culture change.
Our Current Healthier Together Theory of Change
We seek a Palm Beach County where all communities are healthy, thriving and equitable.
In order to achieve this, the aim of Healthier Together is to narrow Palm Beach County’s health disparities and grow communities’ capacity for action.
How We Work
We shine light on communities’ aspirations for a healthier future and engage residents in a meaningful way while expanding and sharing leadership at a local level.
Based on individual visions for each of the Healthier Together communities, participation from each community, shared leadership and a combination of six types of “capital”, Healthier Together communities grow networks in partnership with their residents, organizations and system partners.
The Change We Want To See
Collectively, the networks define challenges facing communities, and design and implement effective problem-solving approaches to influence programs, policies, resource flows, relationships, power dynamics, and ultimately, the mindsets which hold conditions in place.
SIX TYPES OF CAPITAL
Key Ingredients for Change
An important byproduct of the Theory of Change framework was the articulation of six types of capital that would define Palm Health Foundation’s unique value to the initiative. What was the input that the foundation would bring to the table? Over time, the foundation articulated its role by defining specific types of capital it would commit to successfully launch and support the initiative.
The monetary input of the Healthier Together initiative in the form of grants from the foundation to the communities and the monetary output in the form of dollars leveraged and obtained by communities from grants, sponsorships and donations to further advance the work. Mini-grants are an example. Read how they were implemented in Healthier Jupiter.
Interconnected networks of relationships between individuals and groups formed through Healthier Together. There are three types: 1) bonding, the social ties between individuals from the same or similar groups, coming together around a shared purpose; 2) bridging, the social ties that link people from groups that are different (e.g., race, social status, culture) and don’t typically socialize together around a shared purpose; 3) and linking, bridging social ties from those with a voice and desiring to use it to those in positions of institutional power.
The value derived from investing in residents’ capacity building and learning opportunities, which creates a return of knowledge and experience invested back into the community to organize and create structure around a shared purpose.
All the knowledge, talents, skills, abilities, experience, intelligence, training, judgment, and wisdom possessed individually and collectively by all Healthier Together participants, the cumulative total of which represents a form of wealth and energy with capacity to achieve success in ways that can never be predicted or planned for.
The liberal access to in-kind space and services, not normally free, such as church meeting rooms, municipal buildings and non-profits for holding Healthier Together meetings and events.
Individual values characterized by belief in something larger than self, a sense of interconnectedness, moral and ethical drive to serve the common good and ability to share that drive with individuals and networks so all join in a shared purpose.