HEAL Initiative Aims to Reduce Violence in Chicago Neighborhoods

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When Jim, Lauren and I had dinner with Dick and Loretta Durbin mid-summer after an IWIL training session, Sen. Durbin was eager to tell us about an initiative he was pulling together with ten of the largest hospitals in Chicago focused on reducing neighborhood violence in our city’s 18 highest risk neighborhoods, while also improving the economic and physical health of residents of those communities.

Sen. Durbin told us that these hospitals already do so much to help the communities they serve—both within their walls and through a range of initiatives reaching into the neighborhoods—that they represent a logical launching pad for a collaboration to address gaps and maximize impact.  Through countless meetings between Sen. Durbin and the hospital CEOs over a nine-month period, they were able to define a priority three-pronged agenda for collaboration, complete with deliverables and a timeline.

We were impressed and immediately volunteered to help develop and implement a communications strategy for The HEAL (Hospital Engagement, Action and Leadership) Initiative. The video you are about to watch was produced by JT, with the tremendous help of the participating hospitals, Sen. Durbin and his staff. It was shown at the City Club when Sen. Durbin announced HEAL. We remain excited about the potential of this collaboration.

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