About the program

About Boston Community Grants


The American Heart Association is a catalyst to achieving maximum impact in equitable health and wellbeing in the United States and around the world, spanning all populations addressing overall health and wellbeing, anchored in cardiovascular and brain health. Here in Boston, we are committed to partnering with our community to achieve equitable health and wellbeing for all individuals. The Community Impact Grant initiative will support efforts focusing on priorities identified in a comprehensive Community Needs Assessment. Through the assessment we have identified the Boston neighborhoods of Roxbury, Mattapan, East Boston and Dorchester as having the greatest risk for cardiovascular diseases and stroke.

Community Impact Grant Rationale

Where you live can greatly affect your health. Average life expectancy can differ by more than 20 years between neighborhoods just five miles apart due to a variety of social factors. Social determinants of health are the circumstances in which people are born, grow, live, work, play, and age that influence access to resources and opportunities that promote health. The social determinants of health include housing, education, employment, environmental exposure, health care, public safety, food access, income, and health and social services. Special consideration will be given to those applicants who are addressing one or more of these SDOH through their work. We encourage applications for grants that showcase potential for collective impact on urgent health needs.

Programs focused on improving health outcomes in Mattapan, Dorchester, East Boston and Roxbury will be given priority. Compared to the city of Boston as whole, these neighborhoods have as much as:

  • 10 percent higher incidence of hypertension
  • 12 percent higher incidence of obesity
  • 13 percent or more residents consuming at least one sugar-sweetened beverage daily

Grant Focus Areas

We are looking for innovative programs that address social determinants of health and work to provide an increase in consumption of healthy foods, access to blood pressure screenings and/or cholesterol screenings, and education that can be tied to health outcomes in the populations they serve.

Improving Healthy Food Access

Improving healthy food access in Boston through innovative and effective community collaborations, environmental and programmatic interventions, and targeted focus on the most affected food deserts. A program with measurable impact would need to change the landscape of food choices available to consumers and demonstrate how the program is sustainable and/or replicable. Special consideration will be given to those organizations working to provide increased food access and consumption in public and low-income housing communities.

Who Should Apply: Any 501c3 non-profit, community organization, non-profit, government agency, collective impact group, health care providers.

Blood Pressure Control

Help reduce hypertension rates in Greater Boston through a self-monitoring blood pressure program that incorporates the American Heart Association’s Check. Change. Control program. Programs should focus on increasing awareness of the connection between HBP and the risk of heart attack and stroke, drive innovative approaches for HBP management, and increase the number of people controlling their blood pressure. A program with measurable impact would need to be able to accurately measure and record BP numbers of participants and strive for an average decrease of 10mmHG in systolic blood pressure. Visit our Check. Change. Control. website for more information.

Who Should Apply: Any 501c3 non-profit, community organization, non-profit, government agency, collective impact group, health care providers

Cholesterol Control

Help reduce High LDL cholesterol rates in Boston. To move 9.3 million American adults to cholesterol control by 2020, the American Heart Association aims to improve awareness, detection and management of high cholesterol by educating and empowering consumers, healthcare professionals, and patients with evidence-based information and tools, while also improving quality of care for patients. Programs will be asked to participate in and should incorporate our Check. Change. Control. Cholesterol initiative and incorporate the ASCVD Risk Calculator into their Electronic Health Record. Practices should submit proposals for programs that will help them strive for control rates of 70 percent or greater.

Who Should Apply: Health care provider

Questions?  Contact bostoncig@heart.org