The Delta Health Alliance

Delta Health Alliance Receives $30 Million Grant for Indianola Promise Community

Posted on: January 23, 2013

(Stoneville, MS) – Four days before Christmas, Delta Health Alliance (DHA) was notified by the U.S. Department of Education that its proposal for a grant to support the work of the Indianola Promise Community (IPC) was selected for approval.  For each of the next five years, DHA will receive $6 million to strengthen existing promise community programs and to grow new ones in the heart of the Mississippi Delta.

According to Dr. Karen Matthews, CEO, “Delta Health Alliance was among only seventeen organizations across the country to receive an award from this highly competitive grant program. The program in Indianola was the only awarded program serving a rural area and the only winning applicant in the southeast region.”

The Indianola Promise Community is an initiative that unites healthcare, education, community, and faith-based services to create a pipeline of resources from prenatal care through high school graduation, leading adolescents into meaningful careers or college education.  The goal is to ensure kids are ready for school, improve the educational experience, keep students in school through graduation, provide a transition to postsecondary education, and, ultimately, to break the cycle of poverty.  Instead of funding individual programs addressing individual needs, the Promise Community offers a collective approach, with programs and services complementing each other and building on each other in a coordinated fashion.

According to Matthews, “To ensure this mission is successful, we will rigorously measure the performance of every program against ten statistical criteria.  For example, we will set objective goals for increases in early childhood ratings, the state’s standardized achievement tests, graduation rates, and parental involvement.  DHA will retain an independent firm to identify and define these yardsticks and to assess the programs throughout the life of the grant.”


Bill Kennedy, chairman of the DHA Board of Directors said, “We aim to show that by offering a comprehensive set of programs that are independently evaluated, assessed and reassessed on a regular basis, in partnership with the people who live and work in our neighborhoods, we can ensure that Indianola children graduate from high school with the world in front of them.”