The Center for Care Innovations (CCI) is a social venture that has received comprehensive support from Tides for nearly two decades. CCI began as a fiscally sponsored project within the Tides Center, in partnership with The California Endowment (TCE); it has also operated from Tides’ collaborative workspace. From receiving grants to building community with like-minded nonprofits to benefiting from Tides’ network of experts in the healthcare field, CCI has leveraged Tides’ multifaceted offerings in order to change the landscape of clinical care across California and beyond.

TCE wanted to create a relationship with their grantees that was transformational, not simply transactional. In 1999, when CCI was formed, Tides was building out a robust fiscal sponsorship model, putting us at the vanguard of the practice. TCE knew that they wanted a partner with a strong track record who could provide a solid support structure as well as a forward-thinking perspective, which made Tides a natural choice. Furthermore, TCE’s goal of creating a significant grant program quickly and effectively demanded a partner who could help them connect the dots between dollars and beneficiaries. Tides took on this challenge wholeheartedly, helping CCI outline its goals – and reevaluating our own systems as we grew in our understanding of how to offer the best support.

CCI has pushed the community health center field to innovate and develop solutions needed to ensure that every person has access to the best health care possible.

Veenu Aulakh, Executive Director, CCI

From the beginning, CCI envisioned improving the health of poor and under-resourced communities. While the organization’s theory of change has been developed iteratively, it has always worked to strengthen the internal capacity of community health centers while improving the linkages between them, and strengthening the overall field. At its outset, CCI focused on supporting IT infrastructure and leadership within its beneficiary clinics; over time, its approach widened to improving information management, clinical decisions, quality of care, patient and staff experience, and healthier communities on a larger scale. CCI is now a $98 million initiative that has delivered over 737 grants to roughly 92% of California’s health centers, as well as many on the East Coast. In addition, CCI’s successes have attracted further philanthropic and policy support for similar issues on a national level.

CCI has supported its clinical networks with IT improvements, clinic leadership support, care delivery improvements,  strategic investments and technical assistance for pressing challenges. This kind of multi-pronged and evolving approach demands a partner with comprehensive expertise; today, Tides offers ongoing advice on complex budgeting needs, day-to-day operations, grantmaking challenges, and convenings for clinical leaders. This helps CCI’s team focus on strategic thinking, including a recent expansion to New Jersey in order to bring innovation capabilities and new ideas to improve health systems caring for underserved populations.

Since 1999, CCI has seen shifts in its program and leadership; Tides has been with them at every step. Now, as the landscape of healthcare continues to change, CCI must remain flexible and visionary in its approach. As the organization evolves, Tides will continue to provide a growing set of tools and a commitment to constant improvement. Our partnership with CCI has encouraged us to push the boundaries of what’s possible, both within our own organization and within the community healthcare field as a whole.