Following George Floyd’s tragic killing and the historic civil unrest that followed, UnitedHealth Group announced commitments in June to support Mr. Floyd’s family, help Minneapolis-St. Paul businesses rebuild and fund efforts to advance equity and inclusivity in the Twin Cities community.
As part of those ongoing efforts, UnitedHealth Group has announced grant partnerships with five local nonprofit organizations:
Today, company leaders met with the Seward Pharmacy owners in South Minneapolis to tour the pharmacy on Lake Street and discuss the rebuilding and revitalization efforts that are being supported by UnitedHealth Group. Leaders from the announced grant partners, as well as elected officials, participated in the event timed to the beginning of the Seward Pharmacy rebuilding. This project is one of many that the UnitedHealth Group local grant partnerships will enable.
“We are proud to be a part of the Twin Cities community and inspired by how our neighbors have come together to support each other and combat racial injustice,” said Brett Edelson, CEO of UnitedHealthcare of Minnesota. “UnitedHealth Group has made a sustained commitment through a series of local philanthropic partnerships, skills-based pro bono consulting opportunities, and hands-on volunteerism for employees to support healing and rebuilding in our community.”
UnitedHealth Group’s many efforts to help restore health and well-being to Twin Cities communities align with a long history of programs and efforts to improve health equity. Details of the new, local grant partnerships being announced at this time include:
Lake Street Council: $1 million grant and pro bono consulting support
In partnership with UnitedHealth Group, the Lake Street Council has established a “Healthy Lake Street” fund to support organizations and small businesses that were damaged in May and June to make repairs and restock inventory. It is also taking applications from small business to replace lost income and relocate to more permanent space. Criteria for a grant include fewer than 100 full-time employees, less than $3 million in annual revenue and a demonstrated financial need to reopen or sustain existing operations. The pro bono consulting support will improve business management and help build capacity.
Minnesota Community Care: $1 million grant
In partnership with UnitedHealth Group, Minnesota Community Care is activating additional mobile clinics to serve youth, ages 11-22, with primary care, mental health support, social services and pharmacy services. Its community access team will also increase its presence at community-based locations to link clients to needed services.
Neighbors United Funding Collaborative (Midway United Fund): $500,000 grant and pro bono consulting support
In partnership with UnitedHealth Group, the award establishes a “Healthy St. Paul” fund supporting organizations in the Union Park, Hamline Midway and University Avenue areas focused on health and wellness, such as pharmacies, grocery stores and child- and elder-care centers. The funds will help reopen and rebuild businesses and may also assist with property acquisition to relocate destroyed businesses nearby and support creative and community events and services to foster healing. The pro bono consulting support will catalog business needs of the community and help Lloyd’s Pharmacy fully restore services.
West Broadway Business & Area Coalition/Northside Funders: $1 million grant and pro bono consulting support
In partnership with UnitedHealth Group, the award establishes a “Healthy Northside” fund supporting organizations in North Minneapolis focused on health and wellness, such as pharmacies, grocery stores and child- and elder-care centers. The funds will help reopen and rebuild businesses and may also assist with property acquisition to relocate destroyed businesses nearby and support creative and outdoor community events to foster healing. The pro bono consulting will support small businesses with marketing and communications expertise and assistance with rebuilding a local pharmacy.
Heart of America: $165,000 grant, pro bono consulting support and hands-on volunteerism
In partnership with UnitedHealth Group, Heart of America will help reopen, rebuild and reimagine Seward Pharmacy on Lake Street through a process that engages the local community and leverages UnitedHealthcare employee volunteers.
As announced in June, UnitedHealth Group has also created a partnership with the YMCA of the Greater Twin Cities and its Equity Innovation Center of Excellence to advance equity, foster inclusivity and accelerate systemic change. That work is underway, and more details are forthcoming.
Additionally, a collaboration between UnitedHealth Group, Loaves & Fishes and the YMCA of the Greater Twin Cities has provided food to those in need. The coordinated effort included the use of kitchens at its Optum headquarters in Eden Prairie, the preparation of more than 1.1 million meals for Minnesotans from March through September, and Loaves & Fishes distribution of the meals at YMCA locations and 28 additional sites throughout the greater Twin Cities area each day. This program, which served individuals and families in need due to the pandemic and civil unrest, represents a $5.6 million UnitedHealth Group contribution.
With its corporate headquarters located just outside Minneapolis, UnitedHealth Group employs nearly 20,000 people in Minnesota. It is committed to addressing health equity in America by enabling a more diverse workforce across the health care industry, achieving a more diverse workforce within UnitedHealth Group that is reflective of the U.S. population, operating without bias and advancing equity through its business practices.