The monthly newsletter of the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation
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Announcing Our New Substance Use Disorder
Funding Strategies

In March 2020, the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation adopted a new, five-year strategic plan to ensure our Education, Health, and Vitality of Indianapolis goals and priorities reflected our community’s evolving needs. Immediately thereafter, the COVID-19 pandemic led us to pivot and focus temporarily on some of the city’s most pressing concerns, including food access and eLearning. 

In recent months, the Foundation has revisited the funding priorities we adopted last year. Today, we are pleased to announce five new strategies through which we aim to achieve the Foundation’s goal to prevent and address substance use disorder (SUD). Specifically, we will:

  • Disseminate information about gaps in the continuum of care and about evidence-based policies related to prevention, treatment, harm reduction, lifelong recovery supports and contributing systemic factors. 
  • Support advocacy efforts focused on improving access to prevention, treatment, harm reduction and supports for lifelong recovery and on addressing the systemic factors that contribute to SUD. 
  • Support new, and expand existing, efforts to meet the behavioral health and addiction workforce needs in Marion County, with an emphasis on increasing the racial and ethnic diversity of this workforce. 
  • Identify and support proven prevention and early intervention efforts for youth and families. 
  • Identify and support proven and promising programs and initiatives that aim to systematically improve access to prevention, treatment, harm reduction and lifelong recovery supports, especially for underserved populations. 

The Foundation developed this set of strategies by conducting extensive research and consulting with nearly 50 state and local stakeholders with expertise in SUD. Visit to learn more. 


Highlighting Key Statistics on Postsecondary Degrees and Credentials

As our economy rebounds from the pandemic, education beyond high school is more important than ever for obtaining a meaningful career. 

In this month’s issue of our newsletter, we highlight some postsecondary degree and credential attainment data from the Education section of our Community Data Snapshot:

  • From 2015 to 2019, the percentage of the Indiana population age 25+ with a bachelor’s degree or higher increased from 25% to 27%. The Marion County rate increased from 29% to 31% over the same time period.
  • In 2018,10% of Hoosiers age 25-64 held either a short-term college certificate or an industry-recognized certification. 

First Class Graduates from Purdue Polytechnic High School

On June 11, Purdue Polytechnic High School (PPHSgraduated its first class of 110 students. The university created PPHS to build new K-12 pathways that lead to Purdue, especially for Hoosier students who are underserved by traditional high schools and underrepresented in higher education.

In 2017, the Fairbanks Foundation awarded a $1.25 million start-up grant to help establish the PPHS school network. The network also received funding from 2018 to 2021 through the Foundation’s Prevention Matters initiative. Congratulations to the PPHS Class of 2021! 

Eliminating Digital Divide Requires Connectivity for All
Claire Fiddian-Green in IBJ Forefront

COVID-19 highlighted a challenge that predates the pandemic: the gap between people who have easy access to the internet and computers and people who do not, referred to as the digital divide. In Indiana, this impacts both rural and urban communities, but to date, state-level solutions have focused primarily on addressing rural needs. More must be done to tackle both urban and rural connectivity gaps and ensure all people in Indiana, regardless of zip code or household income, can access the education, health, and other services they need to thrive in our global economy.

Copyright © 2022 Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation, Inc., All rights reserved.

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