Grassroots Engagement Initiative

Originally, the Institute's grantmaking strategy focused on engaging partners at the national (“grasstops”) and state (“grassmiddles”) levels.  As this network of committed partners grew and impact was seen across the country, it became clear that a critical voice at a third level of network is critical to the continued success of the Oral Health 2020 movement.

The Grassroots Engagement Initiative now seeks to engage those most directly impacted by oral health inequity.  Grassroots grantees are funded with the goal of lifting up the needs and values of populations at the local, grassroots level.  These organizations come from six states (Arizona, California, Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Virginia) with partnerships and infrastructure already in place that could provide support these new allies.

The 20 community-based organizations participating in this initiative range from direct service providers to advocacy organizations, and are active in the pursuit of social justice for a diverse number of populations.  They have integrated oral health into their existing outreach agenda and work to improve the public perception of oral health within their communities.

For more information on the Grassroots Engagement Initiative, please read our 2019 report, Engaging Grassroots: Intentionally Building Community Power to Drive Oral Health System Change. 

Click here to watch a webinar recording on Grassroots Engagement: Assessing Our Role as a Funder and Ally.