At UNC Health, our more than 40,000 doctors, nurses, clinicians, researchers and staff members are committed to serving the people of North Carolina, improving health outcomes both here in our state and around the world. And that commitment extends beyond our laboratories, hospitals and clinics.
The COVID-19 pandemic has emphasized the importance of food and nutrition in helping individuals combat disease and stay healthy. In an effort to continue serving the health and wellness needs of our patients and their families, we have established a new initiative – UNC Health FoodWell – which officially launched earlier this summer.
A dynamic nutrition and wellness program, UNC Health FoodWell is designed to ensure that no patient or family who comes to Chapel Hill is faced with the prospect of leaving our hospitals and clinics without the necessary resources to combat food insecurity at home.
“Lack of access to food and other nutritional resources has a devastating effect on the health of those facing food insecurity, and FoodWell is a wonderful example of how UNC Health is committed to addressing health equity,” UNC Health Foundation President Leslie H. Nelson-Bernier said. “Seeing how far this program has come in the last year has been truly inspiring.”
This pilot year of FoodWell will provide resources for up to 5,000 families among our inpatient population as well as our outpatient clinics, support that will make a tremendous impact for some of our most vulnerable patients and their families.
“This has been a passion project of mine and my colleagues over the past year,” Tracy Carroll, MSN, RN, NE-BC, CMSRN, Director, Inpatient Heart & Vascular Services, said at the official launch event. “During the very darkest days of the COVID-19 pandemic, this was a bright spot for me, my team and our patients and families.”
Leading The Way Toward Health Equity
UNC Health and the UNC School of Medicine are committed to health equity for all, and the UNC Health FoodWell initiative is a key tool in addressing some of the ways in which patients in our state are struggling to stay healthy.
Through our COVID-19 Response Fund, donors have already provided significant funding support to launch this program. However, ongoing philanthropic support is critical to the success of UNC Health FoodWell.
For more information on how you can join us in the fight against food insecurity for vulnerable patients and their families, please contact Eli Jordfald, Executive Director, Healthcare Philanthropy, at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about weekday volunteer opportunities, please contact Jennifer Gibbs, UNC Health Volunteer Coordinator at email@example.com.