Faithfully Healing the Earth Initiative

Through receipt of a $20,000 grant from the National Religious Partnership for the Environment (NRPE) and the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change The Catholic Health Association — in cooperation with Catholic Health Initiatives (CHI), Denver; Covenant Health Systems, Lexington, Mass.; and Trinity Health, Novi, Mich., — undertook a year-long initiative (starting in late 2008) to develop educational programs and build collaborative activities. The goals were to respond to energy efficiencies within health care facilities as well as explore the health care impact on persons who are poor and how Catholic health care might better respond.

Working together, CHA, CHI, Covenant and Trinity provided leadership for others in the ministry by:

  • Developing resources that include an educational booklet and other instructional and motivational materials on climate change.
  • Presenting information about climate change and what Catholic health care can do to mitigate the problem.
  • Assembling a faculty of experts available to mentor facilities motivated to decrease energy use and emissions.
  • Creating an action plan for decreasing energy consumption and emissions in the health care organizations as well as in the work and personal lives of associates.
  • Collaborating with other organizations to build consensus and replicate successful practices that decrease energy consumption.

This grant provided the Catholic health ministry an opportunity to advance the health of the communities it services by addressing crucial environmental concerns.