Our community is as strong and healthy as it is, at least in some small part, because of the quality and availability of care offered locally by Knox Community Hospital. The Ariel Foundation has provided significant grant support to The Foundation for Knox Community Hospital toward development of a new Family Care Center, completed in early 2020, that houses a birthing center, orthopedics, cardiology, women’s health, family medicine and pediatrics. This special project will enable Knox Community Hospital to continue to serve the needs of the community for years to come, while addressing many of the highest priority needs identified in regular community health needs assessments.
In recognition of the necessity for parent education and support in reducing childhood trauma and creating positive home environments that nurture all children in Mount Vernon and Knox County, The Ariel Foundation has provided long-term grant support in launching the Knox County Parent Support Initiative. Within this county-wide initiative, is the Triple P–Positive Parenting Program, a multilevel system or suite of parenting and family support strategies for families with children from ages 1-12, with extensions to families with teenagers ages 13-16. Triple P is designed to prevent social, emotional, behavioral, and developmental problems in children by enhancing their parents’ knowledge, skills, and confidence. Professionals and paraprofessionals in the community are trained and accredited to provide specific Triple P strategies; these trainers can continue to provide Triple P indefinitely once they are accredited. Triple P has five intervention levels of increasing intensity to meet each family’s needs.
Striving to be inclusive of all ages and abilities, The Ariel Foundation provided a large grant to Knox County Board of Developmental Disabilities for creation of Harmony Playground, located in Mount Vernon’s Memorial Park. The playground, designed for typically developing children as well as for children who use wheelchairs, walkers, or have lack of muscle definition, enables all children to be able to play together safely. The equipment is intended to allow children to play with their parents, grandparents, siblings and friends on many different levels.
Everyone needs to be prepared for when a disaster or injury could occur. American Red Cross’s First Aid Services Team and Disaster Services programming has received regular grant support from The Ariel Foundation to train community volunteers and partner with local fire departments to prevent home fires through free smoke alarm installation.
The FAST program also serves Mount Vernon residents by providing first-aid services at local community events. It is comforting to know that trained volunteers are close by to offer first-aid and CPR.
The Ariel Foundation has provided multiple grants to The Village Network for Juvenile and Family Court Intervention clinical mental health services and Collaborative Problem-Solving Training. Rich in the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT), these programs work to address the needs of the most at-risk youth in our community. NMT serves as the foundation of the mental health services provided by The Village Network. The NMT model is not a specific therapeutic technique or intervention; it is a way to organize a child’s history and current functioning. The goal of this approach is to structure the assessment of a child, the articulation of the primary problems, identification of key strengths and the application of interventions (educational, enrichment and therapeutic) in a way that will help family, educators, therapists and related professionals best meet the needs of the child.