In 2019, Cigna launched Healthier Kids For Our Future, a five-year, $25 million initiative to improve the health and well-being of children around the world—with an initial focus on food insecurity—in recognition that regular access to nutritious and sufficient food is the starting point for a healthier, more productive life. In 2020, Cigna is expanding the initiative to include good health and well-being with a focus on mental health.
Good health and well-being has many dimensions, though at its core, it reflects the whole person—physically and mentally.
The reality is:
- Worldwide, up to 20% of children and adolescents experience mental disorders.
- And yet, 50.6% of American youth aged 6-17 diagnosed with a mental health condition in 2016 were not receiving treatment.
- The coronavirus pandemic is shedding light on a worsening mental health crisis—children and adults are struggling with emotional issues, including increased loneliness, anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts.
The goal is to supplement existing mental health programming, and help close gaps both within and outside the school environment to address loneliness, anxiety, depression, and suicide prevention. They will fund programs that foster collaboration between stakeholders including school administrators and teachers, clinicians, and local and national nonprofits to address mental health and emotional well-being challenges for children.
Partners are encouraged to leverage one or more of the following evidence-based programs:
- Trauma Informed Practices (TIPS)
- Social Emotional Learning (SEL)
- Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS)
Applications are due September 30, 2020.