Superior Health Foundation

Grants at Work – Featured

In May, SHF awarded a $1,359.99 Equipment Fund grant to Ontonagon Village Housing Commission for the purchase of exercise machines for its residents.

Because of the low annual income of the residents, they are not able to pay for a membership to a local gym or purchase their own gym equipment.  The purpose of the equipment is to help the residents become healthier, both physically and mentally, and more mobile.  The equipment is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

SHF is proud to support this effort to allow citizens in that community an opportunity to exercise.

In May 2021, the Superior Health Foundation awarded a $1,765.69 Equipment Fund grant to Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice in Marquette for the purchase of durable medical equipment (DME).

Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice loans out some of its DME to patients and some are rented from local providers.  During the last year, it experienced challenges getting this equipment to patients in need due to supply/demand, staffing issues with suppliers and COVID restrictions.

The grant allowed Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice to purchase three bedside commodes, two bariatric bedside commodes, two bed/chair alarms, two wheelchairs with flip back, two, 20-inch wheelchairs, three shower benches and three shower chairs.

Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice estimates 76 of its patients utilized DME over the last six months. 

In May 2021, the Superior Health Foundation awarded a $1,800 Equipment Fund grant to Camp New Day for the purchase of COVID-19 supplies for its summer camp.

After some uncertainty about what camp would look like, the 2021 camp was a wonderful success.  They had 26 campers attend after each passed a COVID screening.  During the weeklong camp, there were daily temperature checks, masks and gloves were worn, and other COVID protocols were followed.

The SHF grant allowed Camp New Day to plan and execute camp without having to worry about the extra costs associated with the pandemic.  Camp New Day was able to provide a free week of summer camp in a structured environment that was caring, supportive, non-judgmental and fun.

In October 2020, the Superior Health Foundation awarded a $5,000 Fall Grant to Partridge Creek Farm (PCF) in Ishpeming for its Farm-to-School Expansion project.

Students participating in the program learned about how to manufacture compost, involving both science and math in terms of volume and composition, plot design for maximum production, health and nutrition, plant identification and care, soil chemistry, seed saving and related topics. 

Thanks to the Superior Health Foundation grant, Partridge Creek Farm was able to purchase items necessary to winterize and thus expand out compost operations.  Additionally, PCF was able to purchase and install a new, safety compliant, three-bin sink and produce cooler to be able to distribute more fresh produce to the community.

PCF has increased the number of students served in the program weekly and its access to healthy produce by almost 300 percent, from 20 students last fall to 72 students this fall.

Camp UPeninsulin wrapped up its camp for children with Type-1 diabetes over the weekend at Clear Lake. The camp was a tremendous success.

According to Krysti Ostermeyer, the camp welcomed 37 children, with seven counselors and five junior counselors helping. In addition, there were six doctors on hand, including a pediatric endocrinologist, two pediatric endocrine fellows and three family medicine residents

Throughout the week, five nurses and two dietitians rotated to ensure medical help was on hand.

The Superior Health Foundation is so thankful and excited to see the camp was so successful.  SHF committed more than $5,200 in funding to Camp UPeninsulin at its golf outing in June. We think it was an incredible cause and the success of the camp certainly proved that.

Imagine, if you will, a mass casualty incident aboard one of the Pictured Rocks Tour boats. More than 40 people are injured, 10 die.

That was the challenge facing multiple agencies in the Operation Superior Shield full-scale exercise held June 16-17 in Munising.

Coordinated by the United States Coast Guard as part of its ongoing disaster planning, HOPE Animal Assisted Crisis Response — funded by a charitable gift from the Superior Health Foundation — was among the first agencies called upon to deploy.

The first day focused on the initial response to the injured and the stabilization of the scene aboard the tour boat. Then, local responding agencies, including the Alger County Sheriff’s Department, Michigan State Police, Munising Fire Department and others, responded to the Emergency Operations Center in the Munising Fire Department.

Four HOPE canine teams and one team leader, plus HOPE’s Regional Manager and HOPE’s President as observes and evaluators, were part of that local response.

HOPE’s Mission is to provide comfort and encouragement through animal-assisted support to individuals affected by crises and disasters. Deploying to the EOC, HOPE canines gave a much-needed respite to the first responders.

Once the scene was stabilized, the “play” was suspended for the day. “Play” resumed early on Thursday morning. “Victims” were made up with realistic injuries and lots of blood. The rescue boats brought in mannequins with numbers that corresponded to the on-shore role players. As each mannequin was removed from the boat, the role player took its place and was treated accordingly. Two HOPE canine teams were assigned to the triage area and gave support to victims while they waited for an ambulance.

Since this was an operation that could not normally be handled by local agencies, the United States Coast Guard then established an Incident Command Post (ICP) following protocols established post-911.

Two HOPE teams deployed to the ICP. Again, the canines gave support to those in the ICP.

Everyone involved appreciated having the HOPE dogs on the scene. HOPE wishes to thank the Superior Health Foundation for its ongoing support of our mission.

In Spring 2020, the Superior Health Foundation awarded The Caregiver Incentive Project (CIP) a $26,315.97 grant for the CIP Caregiver Academy – New In-home Caregiver training program.

To increase the number of qualified in-home caregivers, the Caregiver Incentive Project is working to improve training and incentives for caregivers as well as advocate for changes in caregiver pay and recognition as a recognized career path.  This pilot training program is initially directed toward new, in-home caregivers with plans to expand the program to cover all direct care settings following the end of the pilot project.

In addition, CIP also plans to develop Level II and III training modules for seasoned direct care workers as part of the Caregiver Academy.

In August, the Superior Health Foundation awarded Tri Township Ambulance Authority in Foster City a $2,500 equipment grant for the purchase of a compression arm.  The compression arm helps with CPR when they are called to a patient who needs lifesaving interventions.  Humans cannot perform proper CPR while an ambulance is moving, but the compression arm can. 

Tri Township Ambulance Authority was able to use the compression arm the first week it had it when they were called to a home for an unresponsive person.  Because the Authority had the compression arm, the EMS team was able to focus on treating the patient in other ways instead of needing multiple providers to step in and take over compressions.  Unfortunately, the patient did not survive, but because of the compression arm, their organs were able to be donated, helping numerous other people.


In June 2020, the Superior Health Foundation awarded Gogebic Community College in Ironwood a $2,500 Equipment Fund grant to purchase manikins for the UP Certified Nurses Aides (CNA) Academy.  The goals of the program were to hire a permanent trainer with dedicated space and equipment to provide training, create multiple entry points throughout the year with a dependable training schedule, hold multiple classes throughout the year providing up to 190 training seats, stabilize the pipeline of applicants and build collaboration with regional employers to solve talent recruit concerns related to CNA applicants.

So far, a permanent trainer has been hired and oriented to the role. A bed, PPE, sink, training manikin and incidentals have been purchased. Three regional employers have purchased training seats through the academy, and six training sessions were offered to the community between May and December 2020. Variable training schedules (afternoon, evening and weekends) have been offered to meet the needs of the different demographic groups being served.

The equipment provided training stations that allowed students to practice skills prior to clinical practice. The talent pipeline is beginning to stabilize despite significant limitations from the pandemic: 46 students have either completed the program or are currently enrolled, and 35 applicants are working to satisfy the requirements to enroll in the course.

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