Three Central Florida churches are establishing faith community nursing programs thanks to grants made possible by the Winter Park Health Foundation (WPHF). The grants, totaling $273,000, are designed to help improve the health of the community by supporting expansion of the successful faith community nursing model which integrates faith and health.
Florida Hospital will provide expertise and guidance for the programs.
Newly selected grant recipients include Redeemer Lutheran Church and First Congregational Church, both of Winter Park, and First Presbyterian Church of Maitland. The programs, which are scheduled to begin in February, will include an eight-day intensive education program for the newly hired nurses, in preparation for their new assignments.
The grants are part of a $500,000 grant initiative launched by WPHF in June 2010 to support faith community nursing programs and other faith-based health promotion activities in Winter Park, Maitland and Eatonville. WPHF is providing funding for the grants and Florida Hospital is providing expertise and oversight for the nursing activities.
“Florida Hospital is excited about partnering with WPHF on this initiative as it will allow us to build upon our community efforts to improve health. Through these programs, we have seen strong evidence of the positive impact that can result from faith communities promoting a culture that supports healthy lifestyles,” said Candace Huber, who is in charge of Florida Hospital’s faith community nursing program.
Faith Community Nurses help members improve their health in a variety of ways, including health assessment and referral to faith and community resources, health counsel and education/programs, personal health advocacy, and coordination of support groups to develop health as a ministry of the congregation.
“The initiative provides a wonderful opportunity to reach people where they worship,” said WPHF Trustee Jean Leuner, also Dean and Professor at the UCF College of Nursing. “The Faith Community Nursing model has proven to be successful and it provides one more way for Winter Park Health Foundation to move closer to its goal of creating the healthiest community in the United States.”
WPHF is a private, not-for-profit organization supporting programs that improve the health of youth, older adults and the community-at-large in Winter Park, Maitland and Eatonville.