Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota's Center for Prevention Announces Funding Opportunity

Health Equity Initiative to Award Approximately 10 Contracts Up to $250,000 Per Year

EAGAN, Minn., Oct. 2, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota's (Blue Cross) Center for Prevention announces a new funding initiative that will award approximately 10 contracts to eligible Minnesota-based organizations to develop culturally-tailored approaches that will reduce health inequities related to tobacco use, exposure to secondhand smoke, healthy eating and active living.

Eligible organizations include nonprofits, for-profit groups, government entities and tribal governments. Priority will be given to activities that result in lasting policy, system and environmental changes. Grants of $25,000 to $75,000 per year will be awarded to organizations with limited previous experience in implementing health-related policy, system and environmental change strategies and for projects lasting two years or less. Grants of up to $250,000 per year will be awarded to organizations that have more extensive experience and for projects lasting between two and three years.

"While efforts focusing on the health of the broader population in Minnesota are important, it's also essential to develop sustainable, culturally sensitive programs that will reduce health disparities in the state, decrease tobacco use, and increase healthy eating and physical activity," said Zachary Meyer, Blue Cross vice president of wellness and prevention. "Blue Cross also believes it's important to focus on high-priority populations with the greatest needs and build a more inclusive health movement that addresses the full diversity of our state."

Interested organizations should submit a letter of intent (LOI) to Blue Cross by Nov. 1, 2012, 5 p.m. CDT. Blue Cross will hold an informative webinar for LOI applicants on Oct. 15, 1-2 p.m. Applicants interested in participating in the webinar should e-mail their name, e-mail address and organization name to [email protected] by Oct. 10. All applicants will be notified by e-mail by Nov. 15 on whether or not they will be invited to submit a full proposal. Full proposals are due Jan. 14, 2013, and grant recipients will be notified by Feb. 25, 2013.

Questions regarding the application process may be directed to [email protected]. A question and answer page at will be updated regularly with answers to specific questions posed by potential applicants.

About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, with headquarters in the St. Paul suburb of Eagan, was chartered in 1933 as Minnesota's first health plan and continues to carry out its charter mission today as a health company: to promote a wider, more economical and timely availability of health services for the people of Minnesota. Blue Cross is a not-for-profit, taxable organization. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, headquartered in Chicago. Go to to learn more about Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota.  The Center for Prevention leads Blue Cross' long-term statewide public health initiative to reduce preventable chronic disease by tackling its root causes: tobacco use, physical inactivity and unhealthy eating. Funded with proceeds from our historic lawsuit against the tobacco industry, the body of work uses all levers of change to make the healthy choice the easy choice in communities across Minnesota.

SOURCE Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota