UPLIFT Florida Network is a nonprofit entity, created by a small exploratory team interested in creating villages – communities of belonging – with the support of The Patterson Foundation.
Through research and numerous conversations, the exploratory team saw a need for a broader, more innovative hub-and-spoke model that was financially sustainable and inclusive of all community members. Creating a regional and statewide hub organization to support the development and operations of a network of villages would help people thrive in their communities.
Pivoting from the creation of one village to the formation of a regional hub organization creates economies of scale, leverages resources, and expands UPLIFT’s reach of the former village model.
UPLIFT is designed to reduce inequity in health outcomes more effectively than the current model through its strategies, reach, and impact. Achieving health equity begins by addressing the social determinants of health (SDOH) through a network of successful villages and enhancing access to community resources.
“Health equity means that everyone has a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible. This requires removing obstacles to health such as poverty, discrimination, and their consequences, including powerlessness and lack of access to good jobs with fair pay, quality education and housing, safe environments, and health care.” Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF)
The key to UPLIFT’s success is firmly rooted in engaging community members and organizations who want to see residents live longer and thrive in their communities.
The Village Movement
Nationwide, villages began appearing 20 years ago as grassroots organizations engaging members and volunteers through programs and services within specific geographic areas.
As community-based networks of members and organizations, villages support aging interdependently and maintain the well-being of their members. Members engage in activities to improve their communities through advocating and creating solutions to community issues. At the heart of villages are volunteerism and neighbors helping neighbors.
Approximately 300 local villages exist in the United States to connect members to a wide range of support services and promote active living.
The Village to Village Network was formed to connect and support the national village movement seeking to change the paradigm of aging.