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STRONG Kids partnership will support organizations working with kids

Staff report • Apr 25, 2019 at 5:30 PM

BRISTOL, Tenn. — Ballad Health, Speedway Children’s Charities (SCC) and Niswonger Children’s Hospital rolled out on Wednesday their STRONG Kids partnership to support organizations that work with children.

“We’re really going to have an opportunity to be hands-on with organizations where before, we’ve given them a check and they’re been very appreciative,” said SCC Executive Director Claudia Byrd. “I really think that now we’re going to collaborate. We’re going to give them all types of information to help them serve the children in their community.”

STRONG stands for Striving Toward Resilience and Opportunity for the Next Generation.

“STRONG Kids is designed to bring a new level of support to representatives like you who are here to serve the children on the front line every day,” Byrd told a roomful of children’s organizations at Bristol Motor Speedway.

One aspect of the partnership, Byrd noted, will be to hold quarterly forums on various topics and best practices.

Niswonger Children’s Hospital CEO Lisa Carter said her organization has felt the pressure to reach out to serve kids.

“We stand to lose a generation of children if we really don’t collectively change the way we do things,” Carter said. “I’m not about losing a generation of kids. This opportunity is so, so powerful. … We know we have disparities. We know we have opportunities to decrease child abuse.”

Paula Masters, Ballad Health vice president of Health Programs, insisted the partnership can help children.

“We all learn from each other,” she said. “I think if we pool all of our knowledge together, we can be stronger.”

Any organizations that support children in our region are encouraged to learn more about STRONG Kids. For more information, contact Masters at paula.masters@balladhealth.org.

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