January 2022 Newsletter
  • Matthew 25: filling the gap
  • Meet the Board: Dr. Joe Muhler
  • Healing Seeds wraps up: rural residents learn about healthy cooking and eating
  • Family Justice Center model established at Amani Family Services
  • PIC webinar: recognizing domestic violence as a serious threat to pregnant women
  • Pre-order the 2022 Community Health Resource Directory
- Supporting access to quality, affordable health and wellness care -
Grantee spotlight:
Matthew 25: filling the gap
Inspired by the Gospel to provide free primary healthcare services, Matthew 25 Health and Care is a comprehensive medical and dental home for uninsured, low-income residents in Northeast Indiana and Northwest Ohio. The St. Joe Community Health Foundation has been a supporter of Matthew 25 since 1999. In December, the Board approved two grants providing $70,000 towards the medical director position and $70,000 in support of the dental director position.

With core values that focus on a faith-based approach to clinic operations, compassion for those with medical and dental needs, professionalism in providing quality care, individual responsibility for one’s own health, respect for all regardless of difference, and stewardship of all resources, Matthew 25 served over 5,100 vulnerable individuals that have very limited or no access to healthcare.

- Continuing a history of compassion and excellence -
Foundation focus:
Meet the Board: Joe Muhler
Throughout 2022, we will introduce our readers to members of our St. Joseph Community Health Foundation Board of Directors. We start with our Board Chair, Dr. Joseph Muhler, a retired family physician who joined the Board in 2016.

Q: What inspires you about the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ and their Foundress, Saint Katharina? Are there particular values or works that you find especially important?

A: The Poor Handmaids first inspired me in 1978 as a Family Practice Resident assigned to St. Joseph Hospital. No person who sought medical care was turned away irrespective of their race, gender, or station in life; more importantly, the Sisters and their staff treated every individual under their care with exactly the same compassion and devotion.

- Dignifying all people with quality food -
Program update:
Healing Seeds wraps up: hundreds of rural residents learn about healthy cooking and eating
Food and nutrition insecurity exists everywhere – central cities, suburban communities, and rural neighborhoods. Because population density is higher in cities and suburbs, there are often more opportunities for residents to connect to resources that provide healthy foods for low or no cost. But access for those in rural areas is usually more difficult – the distance to grocery stores and social service agencies is often hard to overcome.

That’s why the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation and Parkview Health, with support from the New Allen Alliance, developed Healing Seeds, an initiative specifically designed to support access to nutrition education and healthy foods for rural Allen County residents.

- Respecting the dignity of each person -
Grantee spotlight:
"We get you, we see you, and you matter"
Family Justice Center model is established at Amani Family Services
Since 2006, when Amani Family Services was founded, the agency has been working to help immigrants and refugees navigate the criminal justice system after experiencing a crime such as domestic violence or sexual assault. As case managers advocated for their clients and provided much-needed interpretation and translation services, they found the process to be unnecessarily stressful for the victims of crime.

“They have to go to the police to file a report, then another agency and another agency, and they have to tell their story over and over again, essentially re-traumatizing them,” says Jessica Ortiz, Family Justice Center director for Amani Family Services.

While the process creates a great deal of distress, it can also be inefficient. Separate appointments require taking more time off from work, arranging for transportation and childcare, and paying for interpreters for each meeting. It can all take weeks or even months.

That’s why Amani staff began searching for ways to lessen the burden on clients, and they discovered the Family Justice Center model.

- Connecting area professionals to care for moms and babies -
Education opportunity:
Prenatal & Infant Care Webinar
Recognizing Domestic Violence as a Serious Threat 
to Pregnant Women and How to Help Victims

Wednesday, February 16, 2022 | 11:30am
Hear from two local agencies about domestic violence and how to address it within the various communities you may serve. This free, virtual luncheon will help care providers and those within the Prenatal & Infant Care Network recognize the signs of domestic violence, better understand its impact on pregnant and recently pregnant women, see the importance of being culturally competent when addressing domestic violence, and learn practical strategies to help women who may be experiencing violence in their personal lives.

Domestic Violence: How You Can Help

Jennifer Rohlf, director of empowerment, YWCA Northeast Indiana
Domestic Violence in Immigrant and Refugee Communities

Melissa Singh, associate director of the Family Justice Center, Amani Family Services
- Connecting everyone in the community to critical health resources -
Community resource:
Pre-order the 2022 Community Health
Resource Directory
The new 2022 version of the Community Health Resource Directory will be available soon! These directories are provided by the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation to connect local families to over 100 free and low-cost healthcare resources. Paperback directories can be ordered for free by individuals or by agencies, to be distributed to clients. 

Visit SJCHF.org/Directories to pre-order your free directories!
 A ministry sponsored by the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ.