HNH Foundation Addresses Childhood Trauma at its Annual Event

Bill Brown at HNH Foundation 2016 Annual EventPhoto (left to right): HNH Foundation President Gail Garceau welcomed keynote speaker Bill Brown to the Foundation’s Annual Event on September 20, 2016. They are joined by Board Chair Martha McLeod and Vice Chair Kathleen Crompton.

The HNH Foundation highlighted its new focus on the prevention of childhood trauma at its Annual Event on September 20th in Concord. In the keynote address, Bill Brown, co-owner of Confluence Behavioral Health pringfield, Vermont), examined current research that links exposure to childhood trauma and other adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) with changes in the body that can impact both physical and mental health.

Brown cited experts in the field who believe that “Adverse Childhood Experiences are the single greatest unaddressed health care challenge facing our nation today.” The stress of childhood abuse, neglect and exposure to violence – called “toxic load” -- has a measurable impact on our bodies and brain development. He cited data that show that childhood trauma affects an individual’s overall life expectancy, often cut short by some 20 years.

Furthermore, Mr. Brown reported that research has established a correlation between exposure to violence, abuse, neglect, addictions and alcoholism to the current opioid crisis. Childhood trauma is also an economic issue, given the high cost of lost job productivity.

Mr. Brown spoke about the importance of improving our ability to be hopeful – to create a healthy and hopeful transition from childhood to adulthood that reduces toxic stress and builds resiliency, and he applauded the HNH Foundation for its leadership in funding programs with this goal.

According to HNH Foundation Board Chair Martha McLeod, “the Board has identified childhood trauma as a critical issue that affects the health and well-being of our most vulnerable children, often with lifelong consequences. The Foundation seeks to fund innovative approaches that strengthen protective factors and early intervention practices that help prevent childhood trauma and other Adverse Childhood Experiences.
View the Bill Brown's presentation here

HNH Foundation Announces Winner of the 2016 Sandi Van Scoyoc Legacy Award at Annual Event

Krystal Alpers 2016 Legacy Award

Photo caption (left to right): HNH Foundation President Gail Garceau and Former President Sandi Van Scoyoc recently presented the $2500 Sandi Van Scoyoc Legacy Award to Krystal Alpers (Franklin) for her work in improving the health of children.  Joining her at the event were Melissa Lee, Greater Franklin HEAL Coordinator, and Ken Merrifield, Mayor of Franklin.

The HNH Foundation has announced that Krystal Alpers, Parks and Recreation Director in Franklin, NH, is the winner of the 2016 Sandi Van Scoyoc Legacy Award.

The Legacy Award’s annual prize of $2500 is presented to a New Hampshire organization or an individual who exemplifies the Foundation’s founding President’s commitment to improving the health and wellness of New Hampshire’s children and families.

Krystal Alpers was nominated for the award by Melissa Lee, Greater Franklin HEAL Co-Coordinator, who cited Krystal’s “tireless work to enhance the health and well-being of the families of Franklin, whether it’s organizing community projects to improve the beauty and safety of our playgrounds and parks, or advocating for healthy meal options for our kids.”  

According to Lee’s  nomination, Krystal has been instrumental in launching and implementing many projects in the Franklin area:  leading the Odell Park Centennial Project to beautify and increase safety and appeal of the park; implementing the Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Childcare; initiating a Harvest Box at the Bessie Rowell Community Center to provide families a place to leave and take free produce donated from area community and home gardens; co-leading the Franklin Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) Coalition; and establishing gardens that are used by the childcare center and Head Start. 

In presenting the award, HNH Foundation President Gail Garceau stated, “We are honored to recognize Krystal Alpers, who exemplifies the spirit and intent of the Legacy Award. We are recognizing someone who is doing the hard work on the ground, and supporting neighbors and her community in new and innovative ways.”

According to Krystal, “Franklin has many initiatives underway to increase access to healthy foods and to get families physically active.  I want to thank the HNH Foundation as well as Franklin’s elected officials and city administration. Together, we can be true champions for our children.”

HNH Foundation awards $552,031 in Spring 2016 grant cycle

farmers marketThe HNH Foundation awarded $552,031 in grants during its spring 2016 program cycle. The awards benefited 11 health-related initiatives and projects at non-profit and community organizations across the state. Grants awarded in spring 2016 included support to increase access to health and dental insurance coverage, community-based oral health services, prevention of childhood obesity, access to locally-grown food, and improved capacity to help infants and young children who have experienced trauma.

According to HNH Foundation President Gail Garceau, these grants, several of them multi-year awards, address the Foundation’s core mission: “We seek to support innovative ways to advance our funding prioritiesand recognize that broad, strategic collaboration is what moves our good intentions into the arena of real change.”

Multi-year grant recipients include the American Heart Association’s Voices for Healthy Kids statewide network, Seacoast Eat Local, and the Manchester Community Health Center, which recently helped launch ACERT, the Adverse Childhood Experiences Response Team. ACERT is providing support to Manchester children who witness or are exposed to violence, and is a collaborative partnership between the Manchester Police Department, local crisis advocates and mental health providers.

Download a list of the Spring 2016 Grant Awards

HNH Foundation Announces New Board of Directors Members

The HNH Foundation has announced four new Board of Directors members: Thomas A. Clairmont, Lisa Kaplan Howe, Dr. Randi S. Tillman, and Barbara Wauchope.

According to HNH Foundation President Gail Garceau, “these new members bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise that will help us maximize the impact of every grant we make to support effective health initiatives on behalf of children and families across the state.”

Thomas ClairmontThomas Clairmont is the retired CEO of LRG Healthcare, and has been affiliated with the Lakes Region General Hospital since 1971. He also has served as CEO of Franklin Regional Hospital. Mr. Clairmont’s educational background includes an MBA with a concentration in Healthcare Management.


Lisa Kaplan HoweLisa Kaplan Howe is a Senior Adviser at Public Consulting Group, focusing on health policy consulting for state agencies. Prior to joining Public Consulting Group, she was Policy Director at NH Voices for Health after working as Private Market Manager at Health Care for All and as an associate in Ropes and Gray's health law department. She is a member of the New Hampshire and Massachusetts bars.


Randi TillmanDr. Randi Tillman is a seasoned healthcare professional with more than 25 years of business experience in managed care, reimbursement and health economics. She is currently the Dental Director for Northeast Delta Dental. Dr. Tillman is also a member of the Steering Committee for the NH Oral Health Plan and a member of the New Hampshire Oral Health Coalition.


Barb WauchopeBarbara Wauchope is an independent consultant who conducts evaluations and applied research for federal and state agencies and nonprofit organizations, particularly in the areas of child and family well-being and foundation grantmaking. She is the former Director of the Carsey Evaluation Program at UNH’s Carsey Institute.

Manchester Team to Help Children Exposed to Violence

In spring 2016, the HNH Foundation awarded a grant in the amount of $150,000 to the Manchester Community Health Center to launch ACERT, the Adverse Childhood Experiences Response Team.  In partnership with the Manchester Police Department, local crisis advocates and behavioral health providers, ACERT will provide access to support services to Manchester children who witness violence.   The project is funded for three years. Read more about the ACERT project here.