I invite you all to read our Take Five with Jan Nicholson, President of The Nicholson Foundation. The organization plans to commit its last grants next year and close its office in Newark at the end of 2021.
The Foundation will leave a legacy that cannot be easily measured — certainly not in brick and mortar structures or naming rights. The Foundation has instead changed lives by strengthening the systems, and the people, that serve New Jersey residents with the most challenging lives and the fewest resources.
The Foundation certainly changed my life. Six and a half years ago, The Nicholson Foundation urged me to join the Quality Institute — and then supported the Quality Institute’s work to build coalitions to support community health. The Quality Institute’s work with the Foundation continued to grow ever since. We are grateful for The Foundation’s support of our Medicaid Policy Center and its precursor, Medicaid 2.0: A Blueprint for the Future. Medicaid 2.0 brought together people from different disciplines and resulted in 24 recommendations to make Medicaid more effective and efficient. Many of these recommendations now are being turned into Medicaid policy.
The Nicholson Foundation also provided the seed money for the community coalitions that are now the Regional Health Hubs. These hubs are making a difference in the lives of people with many complex health and social needs. The Foundation’s support created a new system —one that breaks down barriers and builds relationships so everyone in a community, from hospitals to city halls to social service providers, can work better together to help residents.
The Nicholson Foundation also brought national models to the Garden State, such as Project Echo. It’s a collaborative model of medical education and care management that empowers clinicians to provide better care to more people.
How do you measure The Foundation’s success? I look at what would not have happened without The Foundation’s catalyzing investments and vision, its insistence for timely action, and its unwavering commitment to New Jersey’s most vulnerable residents.
I invite you to read our Take Five interview with Jan and share your own story of how The Nicholson Foundation affected you.
The Foundation’s success may not be easily measured, but will be lasting.