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GiveBig: Help Us Hit It Out of the Park!

Join us in supporting WithinReach on May 6th!

May 6th is the Seattle Foundation’s GiveBIG, a one-day, online charitable giving event to inspire people to give generously to nonprofit organizations who make our region a healthier and more vital place to live. The Seattle Foundation will stretch any donation given to WithinReach that day. As long as you have an internet connection (or access to the internet on your mobile phone), you can participate!We are proud to be part of an amazing nonprofit organization that makes the connections Washington families need to be healthy. WithinReach connects vulnerable families in Washington to resources that fulfill the most basic of human needs; food and healthcare. Last year alone, we connected more than 250,000 people to free or low cost health insurance, child development screenings and food resources like food stamps and WIC. Watch this video to learn more about how we help move families from crisis to stability.

To join the WithinReach GiveBIG team, this is all you have to do:

1. Mark May 6th in your calendar so you don’t forget to give on that day. On May 6th make a donation to WithinReach. To ensure the match is made, donate through WithinReach’s page in the Seattle Foundation’s online Giving Center: DONATE HERE!

2.  To show your support before May 6th go to the WithinReach Facebook page and share our GiveBIG posts and images.

Thank you for your support!  With your help, we can reach our goal of $10,000 and help connect more families to the resources they need to be healthy.

Tags: GiveBig   Seattle Foundation   

WithinReach Makes the Connections Washington Families Need to be Healthy

At WithinReach we value diversity in every form, and we seek to employ a staff that is representative of the diversity found in our communities.  The agency is on a purposeful journey to strengthen our intercultural competency efforts, recognizing that everyone—ourselves and the various constituents with whom we work—are best served by a varied and dynamic team representing multiple perspectives, values, life experiences, backgrounds, etc.  Our efforts in this regard range from staff retreats where we learn to have courageous conversations to relevant documentary screenings to field trips where we learn more about race in Seattle.
WithinReach strives to hire and retain a diverse workforce; this commitment is an important element of our strategic plan.
Effective today, you will see a new letter from our Executive Director, Alison Carl White, on our ‘Jobs’ page describing how and why WithinReach values intercultural competency.  As Alison says, we recognize that ‘long-held inequities in access, privilege and power keep individuals and families from experiencing optimal health and wellness’.  Our goal is to ensure that all staff members who join the WithinReach team bring a diversity of backgrounds to the agency that can contribute to overcoming such inequities.
Our work to identify the best process for ensuring that our team is truly diverse is ongoing, but it is part of WithinReach’s strategic plan because we know that recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce ensures that our staff members are relatable to and respectful of all experiences our clients might have.  Ultimately, efforts like these allow us to participate in the movement to eliminate injustices, helping to connect families to the resources they need to be healthy.
As the welcome letter says, ‘Join us’ if you’d like to contribute to a team with these values.

2014 Healthy Connections Luncheon: Family Champion Sponsors

We are proud to partner with these great organizations and Healthy Connections Luncheon Family Champion sponsors:

Group Health

Founded in 1947 and based in Seattle, Wash., we began as a community coalition dedicated to making quality health care available and affordable. Today we are one of the few health care organizations in the country governed by consumers. Our 11-member Board of Trustees — all health-plan members elected by other members — work closely with management and medical staff to meet the needs of more than 600,000 residents of Washington and North Idaho.
We collaborate with WithinReach to promote immunizations as key to the health of children, teens and adults as partners on the VAX Northwest program. Through this program, we have increased vaccination rates for Tdap and flu in seasons where these viral illnesses were particularly high in Washington.


At Regence BlueShield we believe healthy families make healthy communities.  We’re a not-for-profit health care company that’s been here for our members for more than 90 years, providing support in times of need and guidance during times of change. Helping our families, co-workers and neighbors get and stay healthy is priority number one, which is why we are proud to support the transformative work WithinReach is doing to help Washington families get, and stay, healthy.


Amerigroup Washington associates share genuine pride in making a difference in the lives of people who might need a little extra help. Amerigroup began serving members July 1, 2012, and currently serves more than 34,000 members through Washington’s Medicaid program, Washington Apple Health. The Amerigroup Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Amerigroup, has contributed more than $4 million to local organizations, including more than $60,000 to Washington organizations that work to create healthy communities by fostering access to care, encouraging safe and healthy children and families, and promoting healthy neighborhoods. Amerigroup Washington is proud to partner with WithinReach, working together to make Washingtonians healthier.

Litho Craft

Litho Craft’s mission is to provide people in the Greater Seattle area with the best possible experience in achieving their marketing objectives.  Our independent roots run deep in the Seattle area and that’s where they’ll stay! Our home town ownership keeps us responsive and flexible while our knowledgeable and experienced people will help you look great to your audience. Litho Craft has been known for years as “Seattle’s Color Printer” and we will continue to be amazing print communicators and now so much more.  Marketing, branding, analytics, emerging technology, design, direct mail campaigns and still the attention to detail and friendly service you expect. At Litho Craft we understand that sometimes you need super human capabilities to get you the results you are looking for with your printing and marketing needs, we love being Heros.

Let WithinReach Be The Best Part Of Your Day

Join us next week at the Healthy Connections Luncheon for a compelling program featuring Master of Ceremonies,  Margaret Larson of KING 5’s “New Day Northwest,” Pediatrician and Seattle Mama Doc Wendy Sue Swanson, and Washington’s First Lady, Trudi Inslee.

Pediatrician Wendy Sue Swanson is Executive Director of Digital Health at Seattle Children’s Hospital and writes the popular Seattle Mama Doc blog. In her blog, she helps parents decipher some of the current medical news as she juggles her life as pediatrician and mother.  She covers babies to teens, spanning issues like immunizations, social emotional health and parenting. In one of our favorite blog posts, she talks about a family tradition called BPOD, or ‘Best Part Of Day’.  In order to foster gratitude, each night at dinner her family (her husband and her two boys) share their BPOD. She describes it as a transformational experience for their family and something that her boys look forward to every night.

For us, the best part of our day often comes from time spent with friends, advocates and partners working on making stronger, healthier communities. At our luncheon next week, we look forward to hearing more insights from Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson and sharing our vision and work with you. We know it will be the best part of our day.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014, Noon-1:15 p.m. Check-in starts at 11:30 a.m.

Washington State Convention Center, 800 Convention Place
Seattle, WA 98101

You and your guests are invited to come and learn how WithinReach works to ensure the health and well-being of children and families in Washington through our services, outreach and advocacy. Register today!

Tags: Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson   Seattle Mama Doc   WithinReach Luncheon   

Register Today for the 2014 Healthy Connections Luncheon

JOIN US! Make it possible for every Washington child and family to be healthy.

WHEN: Wednesday, March 12, 2014, Noon-1:15 p.m. Check-in starts at 11:30a.m.
WHERE: Washington State Convention Center, 800 Convention Place, Seattle, WA

This year’s luncheon will bring together a network of over 400 local health care professionals, supporters and community members to celebrate and honor the families that create our healthy communities in Washington State.  You and your guests are invited to join us for a compelling program featuring Master of Ceremonies, Margaret Larson of KING 5’s “New Day Northwest”, Pediatrician and Seattle Mama Doc, Wendy Sue Swanson and Washington’s First Lady, Trudi Inslee. Come and learn how WithinReach works to ensure the health and well-being of children and families in Washington through our services, outreach and advocacy. Your support will help connect more than 250,000 vulnerable children and families to services to meet basic human needs.


For questions about the luncheon, becoming a table captain and sponsorships, please contact Tracy Anderson at 206-830-5178. If you are unable to join us for the Healthy Connections Luncheon, please consider making a gift to WithinReach.

Healthy Connections Luncheon Sponsored by Community Health Plan of Washington

At Community Health Plan of Washington, we made a commitment more than 20 years ago: To improve the health of our communities by making quality health care accessible to all Washington State residents. We continue that pledge today by providing affordable comprehensive coverage to more than 300,000 individuals and families throughout the state. We are the only health plan in the state founded by local community health centers. This network brought together shared values for equal access to health care, years of experience in community organizing, and effective health care administration. This means our members have access to a large network of first-class medical care — and it’s just down the street.

Following our mission to deliver accessible managed care services we offer a multitude of programs to support our diverse populations. Some of these include Children First – to encourage wellness for kids, Smoking Cessation Programs – support for reducing smoking habits, New Arrivals – services to manage health during pregnancy and CafeWell a Health and Wellness social network where members are empowered to manage their own health

We offer affordable health insurance coverage through numerous public programs under contract with the State of Washington Health Care Authority (HCA) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). We also provide a variety of plans through the Exchange. Our plans and programs include:

Washington Apple Health
Community HealthFirst a Medicare Advantage Plan
Community HealthEsssentials through Washington State Exchange

Coordinated Care: Presenting Sponsor of the 2014 Healthy Connections Luncheon

Coordinated Care is a managed care health plan serving members in Washington Apple Health and through the Exchange in Washington State. Coordinated Care is focused on providing service that is “More help. Less hassle.” Their commitment to education, empowerment, innovation and helping their members improve their overall health is evident throughout their health plan, their investments and partnerships. Their mission is an exact match for the work and vision of WithinReach and we are proud to name them as one of our most dedicated partners.

Coordinated Care delivers high quality, low cost care. They put their beliefs into action each day: treating the whole person, removing barriers, engaging in local partnerships to build strong communities, treating people with respect and kindness, and finding ways to make it simple to get well, stay well and be well.

As one of our most committed collaborators, Coordinated Care regularly highlights the WithinReach Parenthelp123.org website as a partner resource to connect their members and others to the appropriate services  available to each family.

WithinReach is so proud to continue to partner with Coordinated Care and we look forward to continuing our work together to meet the health needs of our community.

AmazonSmile: You Shop, Amazon Gives to WithinReach

Amazon just rolled out AmazonSmile, a new way to shop and support your favorite nonprofit organization. When you are shopping this holiday season, consider using AmazonSmile to support WithinReach. Amazon Smile is the same Amazon you know.  It has the same products, same prices, same service but Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible AmazonSmile purchases to WithinReach. You use the same account on Amazon.com and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, wedding or baby registry, and other account settings are also the same. It won’t  cost you anything extra, as Amazon is donating part of their profits. Support us by starting your shopping at smile.amazon.com.
Here is how to give back while shopping:
2. Choose WithinReach as the organization of  your choice from the menu on the right

3. Click ‘Select and Start Shopping’

4. You are now automatically using Amazon Smile.

5. Select any item market ‘Eligible for Amazon Smile’ and select proceed to checkout and 0.5% of your purchase will be sent to WithinReach.

Take a Break From Holiday Shopping and Participate in #GivingTuesday

WitihinReach has joined #GivingTuesday, the 2nd annual national day of giving that builds the collective power of a unique blend of partners- charities, families, businesses and individuals- to transform how people think about, talk about and participate in the giving season. Coinciding with the Thanksgiving holiday and the kickoff of the holiday shopping season, December 3rd, known as #GivingTuesday, is a day for families and individuals to be generous in ways that matter to them, be that volunteering at a local charity or donating to a favorite cause.  A counter narrative to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday reminds us that the holiday season should be about community and giving back, not just consumerism.

At WithinReach, we talk to families every day that need help accessing health care, food, vaccines, and other resources to promote their health. There are nearly 1 million people in Washington who do not have health insurance and one in four kids in our state are in danger of going hungry. We work hard every day to remove the barriers and make the connections all Washington families need to be healthy. We hope you will participate in #GivingTuesday, and join this collective movement to get involved in creating the vibrant communities we all want.
Here are some ways you can join WithinReach in #GivingTuesday, and help us create a better and healthier future for Washington families:

  • Join our network of volunteers. Volunteers are essential in fulfilling and expanding WithinReach’s mission to make the connections that Washington families need to be healthy, and we have many different ways you can volunteer to make a difference.
  • Support us by starting your shopping at Amazon Smile. When you are shopping this holiday season, consider using AmazonSmile, a new way to shop and support your favorite nonprofit organization. Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of AmazonSmile purchases to WithinReach.
  • Donate to change lives and create healthy communities across Washington State. A gift of any size helps, whether it’s making sure a child has food to eat during the summer when school meals aren’t available, helping a family enroll in health insurance coverage, training doctors and nurses on how to talk about immunizations with patients so more kids get vaccinated against preventable diseases, or screening young kids for developmental delays so they can stay on track for kindergarten.


Tags: #GivingTuesday   

Managing Change and Nurturing Our Culture

I’m still smiling after our terrific All Staff Retreat last week. It is often hard to carve out the time to build team, and I think that as nonprofit leaders, we sometimes assume that because we have a shared vision of the change we are trying to create, that everyone will come together as a team. In addition, it is hard to take the time away from the clients who need our services each day. But taking this time away is very important– if our teams are not cohesive, then we cannot live up to our potential and best serve our clients and communities.
Over the past year, WithinReach has undergone a series of transformational changes in how we organize our teams and deliver our services. Our team has dug deep and the results are amazing, but change can be hard and I was aware that our staff was tired and it was impacting the morale of our team. This year, our retreat was focused on Managing Change, and the nurturing of our culture and our high performing team. We were fortunate to have Point B donate a facilitator for the day and it was amazing. This allowed the senior leadership team to fully participate in the activities of the day.
I observed that one of the secret ingredients to our success is how well rounded our staff is. Our team is showing up content and happy with their lives. We have a number of working moms and we offer an environment that allows them to be professionals and great moms! We have artists and community volunteers that use their passion by day to help people and by night they are creating stronger community. We also have team members who know that self care is not a luxury, but a requirement for delivering the best service to our clients–so we have lots of yogi’s, hikers, and wine drinkers. Finally, I loved how fully and completely our team showed up. From our opening activity, where everyone had to equate their mood to a type of weather, to our ending activity of dramatic interpretations of our brand in action, everyone was open to the experience and participated fully. This is a sign of a healthy team! I am starting the week full of gratitude for the amazing group of people I get to work with everyday.

PS- For those of you who are OD junkies like me, I’ve added our retreat slides for you. It’s good stuff!

Tags: Managing Change   Point B   Self care   staff retreat   Teamwork   

Lynnwood Community Health Fair on Saturday, October 19th

This fall Washington State has an opportunity to enroll nearly one
million uninsured residents in free or low-cost health insurance. The City
of Lynnwood’s Diversity Commission, Verdant Health Commission and
WithinReach are making it a priority to help sign up people who are
newly eligible for health coverage.

If you currently have health insurance through your employer or have
Medicare coverage, you do not need to worry about signing up for coverage beginning October 1. If you are uninsured, it is now the law under the Affordable Healthcare Act to have health insurance.

The Affordable Care Act will significantly improve people’s ability to
get health insurance. A new website, Washington Healthplanfinder,
gives consumers a way to find, compare and enroll in affordable health
insurance. Medicaid will also expand by increasing the income eligibility,
which means many more people will become eligible for the first time.
For example, an individual would qualify for Medicaid if their annual
income was less than $15,864, with higher limits for families with children.
Higher incomes might also be covered by a subsidy, making health
care coverage even more affordable.

This Can Be Confusing But Assistance Is On The Way!

On Saturday, October 19, between 2 – 6 pm at the Lynnwood
Senior Center (19000 44th Ave. W), the City of Lynnwood’s Diversity
Commission, Verdant Health Commission, the Lynnwood Fire
Department and WithinReach are hosting a Community Health Fair.
This family-friendly event will include free informative health insurance
presentations throughout the afternoon, free flu vaccines and free kids’
activities. We will have our trained, bilingual and certified staff available to provide guidance and arrange personal appointments to help your family sign-up for insurance and other community services.

Join your community partners – Coverage is here! For more information
on this event, please contact the Community Outreach Specialist at
425-670-5023 or jmoore@ci.lynnwood.wa.us.

Top 5 Things You Should Know about Health Insurance Enrollment:

  1. You can apply online at, www.wahealthplanfinder.com for coverage beginning January 2014.
  2. All insurance plans will have to cover 10 essential health benefits such as doctor visits, hospitalizations, maternity care, emergency room care, prescriptions and others.
  3. Insurance plans cannot deny health coverage if someone is sick or has a pre-existing condition and all insurance plans will have to show the costs and what is covered. You don’t have to guess at the cost.
  4. In 2014, those who do not have health insurance will have to pay a penalty when they file their 2014 taxes. There are some exceptions, like for people whose income is so low they don’t have to file taxes.
  5. If you can’t make it to this event, make an appointment to discuss health insurance options by calling the WithinReach Family Health Hotline at 800-322-2588. We can help on the phone or in-person (Se habla espanol).

Celebrating a Culture of Workplace Flexibility

Queue the applause (followed by a standing ovation)!  For the 7th consecutive year in a row, WithinReach has won the nationally recognized Alfred P. Sloan Award for Excellence In Workplace Effectiveness and Flexibility. On the heels of the Emmy Awards, I think it is only fitting that the leadership and staff at WithinReach take a bow.

In my mind, the Sloan Award is one of the highest honors an employer can receive.  It is our Emmy for operational excellence, for business smarts, for living our mission from the inside out.

Each year the When Work Works Initiative recognizes worksites across the country for their innovative and effective workplace practices.   In a two phase process, using a rigorous scoring method that looks at  the real life experiences of employees against benchmarks for employer practices, the Sloan Awards honor ‘organizations that are using workplace flexibility as a strategy to make work “work” better—for both the employer and the employee’.

For years now, WithinReach has embraced the belief that workplace flexibility is a critical tool in recruiting and retaining the best and the brightest staff possible, and to improving the health of all families in our state.  Whether it means…

  • offering employees flexible work hours so they can see their children off to school or meet the bus after school to avoid additional childcare costs
  • allowing an employee the chance to work from home one day a week to help an aging parent,
  • helping new Moms feel supported by providing a welcoming space and ample time to pump breastmilk at work, so they can continue to give their babies the best start,
  • fostering a culture of flexibility that tells employees it is OK to bring their kids to work during unforeseen school closures, or when their childcare falls through on a given day (and having  toys, puzzle, and books to engage them).

The research is clear, among other things, employees who work in flexible workplaces report greater engagement on the job, greater desire to stay with the organization, and better overall health.

Raising a family and working full-time is hard.  Doing both well is unbelievably challenging.  Having to choose to do one well, over the other, is unbearable.  At WithinReach, creating a culture of flexibility is about making the connections that our employees and their families need to be healthy.  We don’t ask people to choose between family life and work life.  We don’t penalize or hold people back for wanting to be good parents AND effective professionals.

A work culture that not only respects work-life balance, but encourages it, makes great business sense.  It doesn’t mean we don’t work hard.  In fact, I have never in my career worked with a more dedicated, hard-working group of people.  At WithinReach, we believe all families can be healthy – and that starts with the families of our employees.

So, as we stand at the podium, receiving our ‘Emmy’, we thank our Board of Directors, our leadership, our funders, and supporters, and of course, most of all – our families!

Tags: Work life balance   Workplace flexibility   

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