No Man Is an Island: Social Determinants of Health

Social Determinants of Health Pie

By Sharon Danosky

One thing we have learned from the community indices published by community foundations, is that nothing operates in a vacuum.  So it makes sense that wellness is not a function of good healthcare alone.  There are many determining factors that contribute to wellness and every nonprofit plays an integral role.

We all know that eating well and staying active, getting a flu shot, regular check-ups, not smoking, and getting enough sleep all influence our health.  Good health is also determined by social and economic opportunities.  Having access to good food, clean water, quality education; being safe where we live and work all influence our health as well.  So does the nature of our social interactions, our self-image, and our mental health.  It is all connected.   Which also means none of our nonprofit organizations work in a vacuum.  Collaborative and collective impact initiatives over the past several years have begun to address the systemic problems that focus on the many-faceted aspects of the human condition.   Every nonprofit plays a role in ensuring a health community.  More and more, they are finding creative ways of working together.  I believe we are entering a time where we will see more meaningful and deliberate collaboration around mitigating the factors that deteriorate our health and sense of well-being.  I think it is an exciting time – and healthy time – to work in the nonprofit sector.

To learn more about the Social Determinants of Health click here.

Danosky & Associates works with nonprofit organizations to facilitate collaborative and collect impact initiatives designed to break down barriers and work toward systemic change.