HealthSpark Foundation’s New Director of Equity and Inclusion Seeking to Improve Montco Community Health

Christine Tarlecki
By
Image via HealthSpark Foundation.
HealthSpark’s first Director of Equity and Inclusion, Chinwe Onyekere.

With just a few words with HealthSpark Foundation’s first-ever Director of Equity and Inclusion Ms. Chinwe Onyekere, you feel how warm and caring she is.

Her warmth and passion have led to this moment, where she has been the director for just a few weeks, and she is already making strides in getting help to the Montgomery County communities that need it.

She has previously served as Board Chair during the early learning and creation of their Safety Net Resiliency Initiative, so when this position became available, she knew that she had found the perfect place to be to utilize her knowledge and skills.

Ms. Onyekere is working to end health and socioeconomic disparities, especially for areas that need resources.

HealthSpark launched the Safety Net Resiliency Initiative in 2017, focused on exposing health and social disparities and assisting people that are not getting the resources they need.

Especially since the pandemic began, now more than ever there are people who are food-insecure, unable to pay their rent and mortgage, struggling with maintaining their mental health, and cannot get the care they need for themselves or their families.

The Safety Net Resiliency Initiative is focused on building up the system of care—called the social safety net—that provides these types of resources.

Ms. Onyekere received her Master of Public Health at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, a Certificate in Business Essentials from Wharton School of Business at University of Pennsylvania, and her undergraduate degree from Wellesley College.

Ms. Onyekere was also awarded the 2015 Forum Award for Emerging Women Leaders by The Forum of Executive Women and accepted into the 2019 Class of Leadership Main Line.

The HealthSpark Foundation has focused their work over the years to understand how they can best create a culture of equity and inclusion, internally and in partnership with their Montco community.

This work began with introspection on their investments, policies, and procedures which then reflect their commitments to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Working within these challenging parameters, Ms. Onyekere and her dedicated hard-working team  is working to put themselves in the best position to serve the Montgomery County community.

Their focus is addressing racial injustices by investing in innovative community-driven programming that aims to dismantle institutional racism and improve the health of the community.

Read more about Chinwe Onyekere, Director of Equity and Inclusion, MPH, here.

To read more about the HealthSpark initiatives and their work, click here.

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