TDH Grant Will Support Local Health Councils In Addressing Health Disparities

Thursday, December 08, 2022 | 09:36am

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Department of Health announced today $1.8 million in grant awards will go to seven counties for a variety of locally-designed community health projects focused on improving long-term outcomes in physical health, mental health, and substance misuse.

“We strongly support local leadership and partnerships to make generational health improvements in Tennessee’s distressed and underserved communities,” said TDH Commissioner Dr. Morgan McDonald, MD, FACP, FAAP. “The grants we are awarding will support collaborative, locally-led efforts to address health disparities that not one health department, healthcare provider, or government agency can resolve acting on its own.”

Tennessee counties receiving the TDH grant awards include:

Perry - $500,000 for construction of the Perry County Youth Services Hub, a new brick-and-mortar for organizations providing youth mental health services.
Lawrence - $485,000 to create a new Lawrenceburg Square Pavilion to house a farmer's market and exercise facility, and to host health-focused community classes and events.
Dyer - $440,000 for mental health counseling and substance misuse outreach and services with the Hopefield Mental Health Foundation at a new facility in downtown Dyersburg, Tenn.
Hickman - $250,000 to support mental health and substance misuse programs for individuals and families at five community centers in the county.
Monroe - $50,000 to create a farm-to-school program coordinator position to provide nutrition education to county students on benefits of locally-grown fruits and vegetables.
Davidson - $50,000 for a research project in North Nashville to examine the area’s food availability landscape and historical causes of food insecurity.
Williamson - $25,000 for suicide prevention and crisis intervention training for civic and community organizations through the Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network.

TDH’s grant awards are the result of a statewide effort, called Collaborative Action for Resilience and Equity (CARE), where County Health Councils identified local priorities and created action plans to support health improvements for low-income, minority, and rural populations. A majority of CARE grant funds will go to counties the Tennessee Dept. of Economic and Community Development has identified as at risk or distressed, based on historical socio-economic conditions.

“Coordinated action with trusted partners across many sectors is critical as the foundation for long-term health resiliency and prosperity in communities,” said Dr. Kimberly Lamar, TDH Assistant Commissioner for the Division of Health Disparities Elimination. “Our hope is these grant awards make meaningful impacts for those who need it the most in these counties.”

TDH’s County Health Councils are active in all 95 Tennessee counties and include representatives of local organizations and partners, from both the public and private sectors. Every three years, the Health Councils conduct Community Health Assessments to identify the top priorities to improve public health in their communities. This year, 53 Tennessee counties conducted local health assessments and improvement plans.

For information about the County Health Councils, send an email to Jennifer Trail,, with TDH’s Office of Strategic Initiatives.

The mission of the Tennessee Department of Health is to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee. Learn more about TDH services and programs at