Thanks for all your support and votes.
Santra Denis: Welcome to Catalyst Miami. My name is Santra Denis, Chief Programs Officer.
Nina Thompkins: Our flagship initiative - the Prosperity Campaign - helps connect individuals and families to quality healthcare programs and and services such as SNAP, Medicaid, KidCare, and the Affordable Card Act.
Client (name withheld): Catalyst Miami is helping me with health insurance for the very first time.
Nina Thompkins: Our team is diverse and assists these individuals and families connect to services in English, Spanish, and Haitian Creole.
Santra Denis: At Catalyst Miami, we take public health a step further than just providing free direct services. We want to be part of long-term improvements in health, so we also advocate for Medicaid expansion in our state, and build public awareness of the intersections of public health and climate change.
Gretchen Beesing: I'm Gretchen--I'm the CEO of Catalyst. Every day, this amazing team that you've met is making Miami-Dade County healthier through our direct services and our public health initiatives; and I hope you support us. Thank you!
Catalyst Miami believes everyone deserves a healthy and financially secure life. Yet currently, almost 2 in 3 families in Miami don't have enough savings to weather a financial emergency of any kind. Our defining role is to identify and launch innovative community building strategies that improve life for low-wealth communities throughout Miami-Dade County. For over 20 years, Catalyst Miami has committed to empowering residents to build better futures by providing family economic security programs, developing leadership and civic engagement, and building coalitions to address poverty.
Our programs include a number of free direct services (healthcare and food stamps enrollment, financial coaching, tax preparation, credit building, and non-predatory emergency loans to name a few), but we know that these are short-term solutions. We take things a step further at Catalyst Miami in seeking long-term change through grassroots advocacy training. We are part of a statewide coalition advocating for Medicaid expansion because it would mean hundreds of thousands of Floridians would gain health coverage. We also explore the public health concerns of climate change in our climate resilience advocacy training, CLEAR.
It all began in 1995, when founder, Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava, co-chaired a committee at the League of Women Voters with an officer of the Roblee Foundation, to address the impact of welfare reform on low-income families. Catalyst Miami became a champion for the Earned Income Tax Credit and and local organizer of the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance network for South Florida. Over the years, more direct services were added to our suite of what became known as the Prosperity Campaign, based on the evolving needs of our clients. The organization's focus also expanded to civic engagement and leadership development, so a number of grassroots advocacy trainings and workshops were launched--some have come and gone, while others have been around for 10 years, again, to respond and adjust to the issues affecting low-wealth communities.