Health Forward awards $4 million in Mental Health Grants

Kansas City, MO — Health Forward Foundation is proud to award $4 million in grants to 33 nonprofit organizations through our 2020 Mental Health funding.

These programs improve the availability and quality of mental and behavioral health services.

In addition, Health Forward is announcing $455,264 in COVID-19 response grants to 12 nonprofit organizations that focus on mental and behavioral health.

“These organizations are performing critical work to address some of the most challenging issues in our community. Their efforts enable more people to live healthy and resilient lives,” said Qiana Thomason, President/CEO of Health Forward.

Health Forward received a total of 77 proposals totaling nearly $12.2 million in requests.

The following grants were awarded during the August board of directors meeting:

AgencyAwardGrant Description
Ad Hoc Group Against Crime$131,000 To reduce the impact of trauma that people of color experience in economically-distressed neighborhoods by supporting a range of mental health services, including in-home counseling, support groups, cognitive behavior intervention, crisis support, and a new hospital-based violence intervention project for youth and young adults.
Amethyst Place$70,000To provide trauma-informed therapy and comprehensive case management to help low-income women recovering from drug and alcohol addiction and their children successfully transition to drug-free, independent housing.
Belton Educational Foundation$200,000To improve access to quality mental health services and reduce barriers for children by supporting a comprehensive, school-based program involving students, families, therapists, school staff, and community partners.
Benilde Hall$64,966To improve mental health programming for men experiencing homelessness so they may achieve stability and independence.
Child Abuse Prevention Association$71,163To support clinical programming, Spanish-speaking therapist, occupancy costs, and program supplies.
Child Protection Center$140,000To provide timely access to evidence-based and trauma-focused mental health counseling for child victims of abuse and their families.
Children’s Rights$70,000To conduct legal advocacy to ensure that children in Kansas foster care receive trauma-informed mental health care and are not unnecessarily shuffled through damaging temporary placements.
El Centro$89,268To ensure children have access to quality mental health services that are culturally responsive, family-focused, trauma-informed, and evidence-based.
Genesis School$63,525To help students overcome the impact of childhood trauma by enhancing the comprehensive mental health program with a family resource specialist position to provide student and family support and service linkage.
Hope House$200,000To provide comprehensive, trauma-informed, and evidence-based therapeutic services for adult and child survivors of domestic violence.
Jewish Family Services$76,500To enhance clinical staff capacity to manage increased demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Clinicians provide outpatient psychotherapy to individuals who are experiencing a mental health condition and are low-income or uninsured.
Jewish Vocational Service$100,000To provide direct intensive case management and therapy services, including mental health and domestic violence counseling, to refugee and immigrant individuals.
KC Care Health Center$250,000To provide and increase access to quality behavioral health services for uninsured, underinsured, and underserved residents of the greater Kansas City area.
Legal Aid of Western Missouri$80,057To support a full-time attorney who will provide representation and brief legal advice to clients suffering from mental illness so that they may secure public benefits.
Mattie Rhodes Center$200,000To improve mental and physical health outcomes for Kansas City’s Latino population by providing mental health services.
Metropolitan Organization to Counter Sexual Assault (MOCSA)$150,000To achieve improved mental health, decreased psychological trauma, and improved coping skills for victims of sexual violence and their families in the Kansas City Metro through enhanced operating measures and evidence-based counseling.
Mother’s Refuge$25,000To provide therapeutic support services and improve access to trauma-informed mental health treatment for young mothers experiencing homelessness.
Mt. Carmel Redevelopment Corporation$87,261To increase access to mental health services for individuals and families in crisis by hiring a certified clinical therapist.
Newhouse Shelter$87,828To improve and enhance access to mental health services for people experiencing domestic violence by increasing capacity of clinical staff.
Reconciliation Services$126,752To improve mental health outcomes for African Americans facing high rates of trauma and exposure to violence by increasing access to quality mental health services.
reStart$175,000To provide comprehensive, wraparound services to people experiencing homelessness in the Kansas City area.
Rose Brooks Center$200,000To provide innovative, accessible, and trauma-informed mental health services to economically disadvantaged survivors of domestic violence and their children.
Safehome$200,000To provide free clinical counseling services in order to empower survivors of domestic violence and to decrease negative mental health outcomes associated with trauma and abuse.
SAVE, Inc.$77,000To support a youth drop-in shelter and provide trauma-informed mental health assessment and referral services to transition-aged youth experiencing homelessness and identify as LGBTQ.
Sheffield Place$121,993To achieve improved mental health functioning for mothers and children experiencing trauma and homelessness by providing expanded mental health services.
Sunflower House$67,722To improve the quality of mental health services for individuals experiencing abuse in Johnson and Wyandotte counties through continued partnership with PACES and enhanced staff capacity.
Synergy Services$84,490To support clinical staff and costs associated with training staff in a proven trauma-informed modality.
The Children’s Place$165,676To achieve improved mental health outcomes for children experiencing trauma and their families by providing evidence-based mental health services.
The Family Conservancy$177,796To support the Wyandotte County Clinical Office and provide outpatient mental health services to low-income children and adults who have experienced trauma.
United Inner City Services$90,000To expand access to mental health services and build a strong foundation of social and emotional development for children in the early childhood education program and their families.
Veronica’s Voice$15,000To increase access to individual and group trauma counseling for women taking part in Magdalene KC, a residential program serving women in recovery from addiction, homelessness, violence, and commercial sexual exploitation.
Vibrant Health$136,739To provide integrated primary care and mental health services for children and adults at two clinics, three schools, and via telehealth in Wyandotte County and neighboring communities.
Wyandot Behavioral Health Network$250,000To improve access to core psychiatric care and improve the quality of services provided to those most in need in Wyandotte County.

The Mental Health Grants are the second round of foundation defined grants awarded by Health Forward in 2020. Safety Net Grants will be announced in December. For more information on applying for foundation defined grants, visit

COVID-19 response grants

When the pandemic reached the Kansas City region, Health Forward recognized the immediate need our partners were facing. Program officers recommended allocating a portion of the Mental Health Grants budget to provide COVID-19 response grants to organizations applying for support through the applicant defined grant process from April through June. Over three months, 12 applicant defined grant proposals were approved for limited, expedited funding. 

Gordon Parks Elementary School$17,000
Hope House$50,000
Jackson County CASA$10,600
Johnson County Mental Health Center$25,000
KidsTLC $50,000
Mattie Rhodes Center$25,000
Newhouse Shelter$49,945
Poetry for Personal Power$49,359
Reconciliation Services$50,000
Synergy Services$50,000
Wyandot Behavioral Health Network$28,360
Youth Ambassadors$50,000