Rural Philanthropic Leader You Should Know:
United Methodist Health Ministry Fund

united methodist health ministry fund logo

The United Methodist Health Ministry Fund, a statewide healthcare conversion foundation in Kansas, has a strong record of rural achievement well beyond its modest endowment size by leading work on issues like dental and tele-health systems that have long-term impacts. Their comprehensive work with rural church congregations is another example of doing rural work at scale.

United Methodist Health Ministry Fund, a Kansas philanthropy focused on access to care, early childhood development, and building healthy congregations and communities, seeks lasting systems change in its strategic areas by regularly partnering with and convening grantees, policymakers and stakeholders to address unmet needs and complex policy challenges.

Increasing access to care, especially in rural communities

As a trusted convener of rural health providers and community members, the Health Fund leverages a range of opportunities to address both health care systems and underlying social and economic forces affecting health. Understanding that ensuring access requires sustainable financing and a willingness to support innovative approaches to policy change, care delivery and community engagement, the Health Fund supports policy changes in the areas of access and coverage, including Medicaid expansion, health equity, payment and delivery reform, sensible tax policy and workforce development.

Advocating for evidence-based early childhood programs

Research shows investing early achieves both the best health outcomes and the greatest return on investment. Through policy advocacy and funding evidence-based early childhood development programs, the Health Fund helps the youngest rural Kansans benefit from the nurturing family environments, screening, and early intervention key to success in school and life.

Activating congregations to improve community health

Intimate ties to Kansas and Nebraska United Methodist congregations uniquely position the Fund to inspire grassroots projects improving rural communities. Healthy Congregations provides funding and training for local projects addressing social determinants of health, including a rural bike share program, community gardens and orchards, and Faith in Democracy, a program to boost voter and civic engagement.