Frequently Asked Questions

What is Dogwood Health Trust?

Dogwood Health Trust is a private non-operating foundation with the sole purpose of dramatically improving the health and well-being of all people and communities of Western North Carolina.

Dogwood Health Trust was established to receive the proceeds from the sale of the assets of the nonprofit Mission Health System to HCA Healthcare in January 2019. The Trust is not affiliated in any way with either Mission Health System or HCA. It is governed and operated as an independent entity under the charge of its Board of Directors.

What is a private, non-operating foundation?

A private non-operating foundation grants money to other organizations. This is the more common type of private foundation. These foundations do not directly perform their own charitable programs.

When was Dogwood Health Trust established?

Dogwood Health Trust was established on May 16, 2018 as an independent foundation and became fully operational on February 1, 2019.

What does Dogwood Health Trust do?

Dogwood Health Trust will invest in Western North Carolina organizations that address factors impacting a person’s health and well-being, often referred to as the Social Determinants of Health. As a partner and collaborator across the 18-county region, the Trust will be engaged primarily in grantmaking as well as convening nonprofits and collaborating with local, state and national experts who are also working to improve overall health and well-being across communities.

Who does Dogwood Health Trust serve?

Dogwood Health Trust serves the 901,715 people in communities across the 18 counties of Western North Carolina including Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania and Yancey.

How will Dogwood Health Trust improve health in Western North Carolina?

Dogwood Health Trust will partner with other organizations, government entities, nonprofits and other funders to address factors that impact people’s health and well-being across a wide range of areas including economic stability, education, social and community context, housing and place-based initiatives. This work has the potential to exponentially improve outcomes fostering sustainable solutions for generations to come.

For example, among the Trust’s first investments will be $25 million over five years to help fund programs and services addressing substance use disorders for residents of Western North Carolina in partnership and collaboration with the NC Department of Health and Human Services.

Who runs Dogwood Health Trust?

The organization is governed by the Dogwood Health Trust Board of Directors, a diverse group of community leaders who serve as volunteers, without compensation. Directors provide primary fiduciary oversight and seek to ensure a sustainable future through sound, ethical governance and financial management. The Board is an evolving body committed to maintaining its reflection of Western North Carolina through a diverse and informed membership constantly focused on the needs of all people and communities of this region.

There is also a team of staff members that assures the day-to-day operations of the Trust.

How do I nominate a Board member?

It is essential that the directors of DHT are reflective of the geography, diversity and cultures found across Western North Carolina. Learn more about the nomination process.

Who is the principal professional leader of Dogwood Health Trust?

The Board is currently seeking a dynamic, devoted and experienced Chief Executive Officer committed to improving the lives of people in Western North Carolina. Download the leadership profile.

How does Dogwood Health Trust define each sub-region within the 18-county region?

Region Map

How does Dogwood Health Trust determine how much money to invest in the community?

Dogwood Health Trust expects to have approximately $1.5 billion in assets, the proceeds of which can be invested in the community. Based on conservative projected financial investment returns, the Trust expects to spend $50 million to $75 million annually to address the social issues affecting the health and well-being of Western North Carolina residents.

When will Dogwood Health Trust begin making grants?

The Trust's first cycle of grants is to be completed on or before December 31, 2020.

How will the Trust allocate its investments in each region?

The Trust's core investment decisions will be informed by listening to nonprofit partners and learning from other collaborative work, which will inform the Board's Strategic Plan. This Plan will result in a grant program whose priorities for funding are directly aimed at addressing the gaps in an individuals' abilities to have and meet goals for their own health and well-being.

How does Dogwood Health Trust gather community input?

Dogwood Health Trust is hosting Listening Engagements with nonprofit and community leaders throughout Western North Carolina to learn about the strengths, challenges and opportunities to improve health and well-being in the local communities that they serve. Listening Engagements will be conducted in each sub-region of the 18 counties and the findings will be shared. The Trust will also host three public meetings in the fall of 2019.

Will the input from the Listening Engagements be made public?

The combined information and insights provided by our nonprofit leaders will be placed into a user-friendly format and shared first with Listening Engagement participants, then posted on the Dogwood Health Trust website.