Reds team up to revamp Health Center

Club pairs with Community Makeover to dedicate new Mother's Room

May 5th, 2023

The Cincinnati Reds and their partners from the Community Makeover dedicated a new Mother’s Room at the Lincoln Heights Health Center on Thursday.

In 2022, the Reds, P&G, Cincinnati Zoo, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and GE Aerospace teamed up for the 13th annual Reds Community Fund Community Makeover which helped transform six different locations across the village of Lincoln Heights.

One of those locations was a special project at the HealthCare Connection at Lincoln Heights Health Center, a nonprofit health care center that provides services to the underserved and uninsured in the area. The women’s health initiative was announced during a groundbreaking ceremony at the village-wide service day on Aug. 4, 2022.

The new Mother’s Room turned a storage space in the facility’s basement into a beautiful finished layout that will provide prenatal care and the “Centering Pregnancy” program for local women. Centering Pregnancy prenatal care brings expecting patients out of the exam room and into a comfortable group setting. National data has shown that Centering Pregnancy decreases the rate of preterm and low-weight babies, increases breastfeeding rates and leads to better pregnancy spacing.

“This was one of the really important projects to try and do something that will leave a lasting impact in this community,” said Charley Frank, Reds Community Fund executive director. “It’s already fortunate to have a phenomenal facility like the Health Center, but this is a national program that’s going to be aimed at young mothers. Centering Pregnancy is vital and a progressive piece to add to an already high-functioning facility in Lincoln Heights.”

Frank emceed the event, which featured representatives from all the makeover partners, along with HealthCare Connection CEO Jolene Joseph, the location’s midwife Christa Sweeney, Reds senior vice president of business operations Karen Forgus and village of Lincoln Heights mayor Ruby Mumphrey.

“This is one of those moments where it’s so important that the stewardship of an iconic brand like the Reds -- high profile, big business, high stakes -- has ties to the Cincinnati market,” Forgus said. “Because coming into this area and fixing up the baseball fields isn’t enough. We’re extremely honored and thrilled how everyone stepped up to get this done.”

Hayley Meyer from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital helped lead the project, along with Sharp Conway Architects and Lincoln Heights-based Diversified Facility Solutions. Cincinnati Children’s Hospital has been a major contributor to the Community Makeover dating back to 2013, with an extraordinary commitment toward the 2020-21 project work near their Avondale headquarters. This unique layer of the '22 Lincoln Heights scope wouldn’t have happened without the CCH investment and guidance.

HealthCare Connection has been providing services to Lincoln Heights since the Health Center opened 56 yeas ago. The company has grown since then, but it began in the village where its roots remain entrenched. Providing a service like Centering Pregnancy back into the community was at the top of its priority list.

“One of the things that makes this space incredibly important to us is we weren’t sure this was ever going to be a dream that could come true for us -- providing Centering Pregnancy for our expecting mothers,” Joseph said. “Providing Centering Pregnancy is another method for us to attain paternal health equity. Our role is to ensure that all mothers and infants have a great early start and the services they deserve, and we can begin that through this program.”

The new space is located on the bottom floor of the health care center. The private room offers multiple seating options, a children’s area, a kitchenette, an exam room and more.

The addition of a program like Centering Pregnancy and a comfortable and supportive space that the new Mother’s Room offers spoke directly to Lincoln Heights' mayor.

“I was a young mother myself and went to the Health Center back when it was on Adams Street,” said Mumphrey. “So when I think about what the Health Center looks like today and these young mothers, the space that they have been blessed with, and all our partners, it’s amazing. I’m just so happy that the village is going to have this opportunity for our young mothers, both single and wedded. It’s wonderful to think of the impact it will make, to give them that extra boost and encourage them as they raise their children for tomorrow.”