DALLAS, November 24, 2020 — Businesses and nonprofits that are working to sustainably address food insecurity in Chicago and Atlanta may be eligible for more than $4.5 million in social impact funding through the American Heart Association’s Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund.

The national fund invests in evidence-based, community-driven entrepreneurial solutions. This round of funding is focused on Chicago and Atlanta, specifically addressing food insecurity by increasing access to affordable and healthy food. Expressions of Interest for funding may be submitted at https://heart-impactfund.fluxx.io/ through December 11.

Virtual informational “town hall” events in Atlanta and Chicago will also be offered where community members will discuss the challenges and opportunities to addressing food insecurity with American Heart Association staff to ensure funds are distributed to areas of greatest need and impact.

Atlanta Tyson Impact Fund Town Hall

December 2, 2020

10 a.m. CST / 11 a.m. EST

Register here

Chicago Tyson Impact Fund Town Hall

December 3, 2020

10 a.m. CST / 11 a.m. EST

Register here

“Racial inequalities have a dire impact on the health and lifespan of people of color,” said Nancy Brown, CEO of the American Heart Association. “Through the Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund, social entrepreneurs will be able to accelerate the development of sustainable community-based solutions to make a meaningful, measurable impact on food insecurity and nutrition in Atlanta and Chicago. And those entrepreneurs will gain access to immediate and substantial funding to help scale their businesses quickly, making a positive financial impact on their communities.”

Since its launch in June 2020, the Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund has supported 11 social entrepreneurs and nonprofits in New York, San Francisco and Oakland, Calif. The fund honors the late Bernard J. Tyson, long-time American Heart Association volunteer and former Kaiser Permanente CEO. Tyson worked tirelessly to overcome structural and systemic barriers to support social justice and equitable health for all.

Learn more about the Bernard J. Tyson Impact Fund here.

To submit a funding application, click here.

Facts about food insecurity:

  • About half of deaths from heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes in the U.S. is linked to a poor diet.1
  • About 40 million Americans live in households that don’t always have enough food for everyone in the family.2
  • Working-age adults who often go without enough food are at least 40% more likely to suffer from long-term health problems, according to a study for the U.S. Department of Agriculture.3 
  • Children who face food insecurity experience gaps in cognitive development and school achievement.4

1 BCBS Zip Code Effect, JAMA, “Association Between Dietary Factors and Mortality From Heart Disease, Stroke, and Type 2 Diabetes in the United States

2  BCBS Zip Code Effect, United States Department of Agriculture, Key Stats & Graphics

3  BCBS Zip Code Effect, United States Department of Agriculture, Food Insecurity, Chronic Disease, and Health Among Working-Age Adults

4  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4096937/ 

Link to release in Spanish


About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Connect with us on heart.org, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.   

For Media Inquiries: 214-706-1173

Tresa Chambers: 646-606-4041; tresa.chambers@heart.org

For Public Inquiries: 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721)

heart.org and strokeassociation.org