From the Board Chair and President
When CHHSM gathered for the 82nd Annual Gathering in Memphis in March 2020 to focus on the theme “Justice and Grace—Together,” which launched with a historic panel of women justice leaders in the UCC, we were just beginning to hear disturbing and worrisome news of an emerging coronavirus pandemic. For many of us, the Annual Gathering was our final trip before Covid-19 radically changed the way we have worked and lived since then in ways that we could not foresee.
Then at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, our attention was drawn to the assaults, murders, protests, and violence related to systemic racism. We came to understand both the Covid-19 pandemic and systemic racism as public health crises that are interrelated—those who are impacted by systemic racism have also been disproportionately impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
These two public health crises have shaped our work this year in ways that we could not have anticipated. CHHSM has always stood up against injustice in our world and has again chosen to lift up anti-racism work with our words, actions and financial support. In 2020 we have attempted to hold “Justice and Grace—Together” in the following ways:
- Launched a coronavirus resource area on our website
- Released a statement on the pandemic of systemic racism with specific actions steps:
The Covid-19 pandemic greatly impacted the way that we did our day-to-day work by forcing us to suspend all in-person programs. While we had to postpone our Nollau Leadership Institute for a year, we were able to keep our incoming class together with monthly Zoom gatherings. We were also able to leverage technology to make all our affinity group meeting virtual, which actually increased the number of people that we reached, as well as pilot online Nollau to You sessions. At the same time, we increased our efforts around advocacy by producing nine advocacy toolkits on critical issues related to health and human services as the 2020 election approached.
Through all these efforts, we have sought to be faithful to God’s call to hold Justice and Grace—Together. We know that this has been an extremely challenging year for all of you in our member ministries, who have been on the frontlines of responding to these public health crises. We hope that you feel supported by us in your ministry as you seek to hold Justice and Grace—Together.
As we vaccinate a nation, we look forward to returning to a more normal life where we can meet in person once again. We have never felt closer to each of you in the work we do to bring hope to our partners, their staff and the people we serve across our great country. Virtual meetings will not dampen our passion for the work of CHHSM.
Each of you represents a mission of justice and grace that has been called on over the past year to put self aside and risk your own health and your company’s assets to continue serving your communities. Being together in a common ministry of justice and grace is one of the most important things about the work of CHHSM. Our ministry to the least among us has not been stopped by a virus; it has only changed our approach.
May we all continue to have faith in the future that God brings us and be present and focused in our actions every day.
Together in the Promises of Justice and Grace,
Michael J. Readinger
President and CEO
Chair, Board of Directors
Responding to COVID-19
CHHSM staff quickly gathered resources to provide guidance and encouragement as our members responded to the pandemic.
Members in Ministry
CHHSM member ministries found ways to serve those most vulnerable to Covid-19 in ways that were both faith-filled and creative.
Responding to Systemic Racism
Board and Staff
The Board and Staff released a statement on systemic racism and committed to action steps.
Member ministries also spoke out against systemic racism and sought to address racial inequities.
Spotlight on Service
Together, CHHSM’s 431 health and human service programs and communities provided
$1 billion in uncompensated, charitable care.
served including 21,490 children; 19,710 youth; 16,498 families; 33,581 older adults; and 3,717 veterans
operated in facilities providing acute, skilled nursing, and memory care
including 21,167 affordable housing units; 10,035 independent living units; and 3,219 assisted living units
with developmental disabilities received residential and non-residential services
of volunteer service provided
employed across UCC health and human service ministries
2020 Social Accountability Report
At CHHSM, we look at social accountability as part of our mission and as a means of showing our ministries in action. We seek to build bridges with our members, our partners, our constituents and all those we encounter in our passion-driven ministry of health and human services. We accomplish this through volunteerism, through pro bono consultations by CHHSM staff and board, through contributions, donations and scholarships, and by using capital resources to support our member ministries and other organizations focused on racial equity. And we do all of this work toward our vision: Together, we create a just, caring, and compassionate world.
Total Social Accountability Impact: $159,100
The social accountability impact of CHHSM as an organization can be quantified in dollars but our collective engagement with the wider Church and world is measured in a more meaningful way when we look at how we have built bridges to local Churches, Associations, Conferences, the National setting of the UCC and all our ministry partners.
Located in Cleveland, Ohio, the Council for Health and Human Service Ministries, United Church of Christ acknowledges that we reside on the traditional homeland of the Lenape (Delaware), Shawnee, Wyandot Miami, Ottawa, Potawatomi, and other Great Lakes tribes (Chippewa, Kickapoo, Wea, Pinakahsw, and Kaskaskia) who have stewarded this land for generations. We also acknowledge the thousands of Native Americans who now call Northeast Ohio home.