The Community Health Endowment of Lincoln (CHE) is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a series of 20 free community-based, health-related events. Mayor Chris Beutler helped launch the year-long Health 20/20 series with Lori Seibel, CHE President/CEO, and Michael Molvar, D.D.S., Chair of the CHE Board of Trustees.
Through Health 20/20, Molvar said that CHE is partnering with community organizations to "take our birthday party to the streets." Events will take place in neighborhoods across the city, and will include pop-up dental shops, fresh fruit giveaways, fun runs and more. A list of the events planned for the first three months of the anniversary year is available at chelincoln.org, and it will be updated as more events are planned. (A partial list follows this release.)
CHE is a municipal endowment dedicated to making Lincoln the healthiest community in the nation. To achieve this vision, CHE invests in health-related projects and programs and convenes the community around important health issues. CHE was created in 1998 with the proceeds of the sale of City-owned Lincoln General Hospital to Bryan Health. That followed a two-year process of study and public input. The original value of the proceeds of the sale of Lincoln General was $37 million. The current value of the endowment is more than $63 million dollars.
"The true value of the endowment is in the investments that have been made back into the community," Mayor Beutler said. "This year, CHE surpassed $30 million in grants awarded. Within just a few years, CHE will have given back more to the community than the original value of the sale. And that's just the beginning."
Highlights from CHE's first 20 years include the following:
Molvar thanked the many community leaders who have been involved with CHE since its inception, including current and former members of the Board of Trustees and the five mayors who have supported CHE.
Seibel said CHE will announce two Legacy Projects this fall. And she said CHE leadership will continue to value and depend on public input and participation to guide the organization. "There is an old saying --'If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together,'" she said. "Belief in 'going together' with the community has brought CHE from just an idea to where we are today. I can only imagine how far we will go together in the next 20 years."