Photo: Hozhoni participants in the Snowshoe competition at Special Olympics, one of the many activities supported through a grant from the Foundation.

Good health is dependent on access to a good quality of life. Social, economic, and environmental factors all influence overall well-being, and when we as a community address these needs, more people have opportunities to thrive.

Through a focused approach to grant-making, we’ve been privileged to support local nonprofit initiatives established to create the best health outcomes for people who call northern Arizona home. One of these programs is the Hozhoni Foundation’s Health & Happiness Project (H3) aimed at addressing the unfunded physical, dental, behavioral, communication, and therapeutic needs of its clients.

Founded in 1970 as an alternative to institutionalizing children with intellectual/developmental (I/DD) disabilities, the organization has provided residential, vocational, and education services through 21 group homes, ongoing multi-day programs, and client employment sites across three cities. Hozhoni’s commitment to sustainable health solutions remains steadfast. However, enhancing the quality of life for adults with I/DD, who are generally more prone to chronic illness, comes with its challenges.

Individuals with I/DD often experience higher rates of obesity, sedentary behaviors, and poor nutritional habits. These occurrences, in addition to limited access to healthcare options, wrap-around support services, and dedicated funding create obstacles to optimal health outcomes.

The H3 Project was designed to fill in the gaps—to treat the whole person through a continuity of care. H3’s programming goals hope to see a decrease in urgent care and emergency room visits, hospitalization, and behavioral incidents by providing relevant education, enhanced medical management, nutrition coaching, and several therapies to encourage overall well-being.

Through a Foundation grant, we are proud to support H3’s holistic approach to empower 80 more clients with the tools for self-sufficiency that combat the effects of chronic illness and unlock health and happiness for life.