Quarterly News


The Memorial Foundation is pleased to announce that it awarded grants to 50 nonprofit organizations during the first quarter of 2018. Grants will support a wide variety of vital services in Middle Tennessee.

Alive Hospice

Alive Hospice provides medical, psychological, and spiritual care to terminally ill patients and their families primarily in twelve Middle Tennessee counties. Annually, over 3,600 patients and families are served at home, skilled nursing facilities, hospitals, The Residence at Alive Hospice-Nashville (30-beds), The Residence at Alive Hospice-Murfreesboro (10-beds), and at a 15-bed inpatient unit at the Skyline Madison Campus. Alive Hospice also offers bereavement counseling and serves as a training partner for over 17 academic institutions as well as providing community education programs. Grant funding from The Memorial Foundation will support a newly developed Telehospice program to become a part of the standard of care for all home-based patients and deployed with every hospice admission. Telehospice addresses a significant issue that home hospice patients and providers struggle with – access to immediate care. When a situation arises that the family feels might require hands-on medical assessment, they have 24/7 access to the clinical call center. The on-call clinicians can immediately connect visually to care for the patients via teleconferencing software through iPad technology. This technology enhances communication by providing visual cues and visual assessment of patients remotely when time is of the essence. On-call clinicians are able to more effectively evaluate issues as they arise by having visual information and a face-to-face conversation. Telehospice provides patients with improved and visual “on-demand” care, gives the patients and their families a higher level of reassurance that they can access care whenever they are in need, and no longer have to wait anxiously for a nurse to arrive, or struggle over the phone to describe difficult medical issues. Two primary goals of the program are to increase timely access to healthcare providers, decrease any delayed response to patient care, and decrease the number of unscheduled visits. Alive Hospice will share all results, challenges, and impacts with hospices across the nation through NHPCO (National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization), and other leading hospice organizations in hopes of establishing new best practices in the health care sector.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee

For almost 50 years, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Middle Tennessee (BBBS) mentoring program has recruited, screened, and trained adult volunteer mentors to work with more than 1,200 at-risk youth ages 6-18 years in eight Middle Tennessee counties. The purpose of the program is to build and support life-changing mentoring relationships for young people who face adversity in their lives. Parents are provided with training opportunities through the Parent Engagement program. All mentoring matches are supported and coached one-on-one by professional social workers. Mentoring is provided through two main types of programs: 1) Community-Based Mentoring – mentors and children engage in community activities together 4-8+ hours per month for a year or more. 2) School/Site-Based Mentoring – mentors and children meet at least one hour weekly during the school year in schools or after-school facilities for recreational and educational activities. The Average Length of Mentoring Relationship for a Community-Based Mentoring match is 39.9 months and 18 months for a School-Based match, well above BBBS of America national averages. Other special mentoring programs include: Amachi Program serves children of prisoners; High School Bigs utilizes high school students as mentors for elementary students; RSVP engages senior citizens as mentors in schools in Cheatham and Robertson counties; Bigs in Blue which matches police officers as mentors; and ICouldBe combines online and face-to-face communication between high school students and corporate mentors through a career and college prep curriculum-based e-mentoring program. Last year, BBBS served 1,283 youth. 84% of these children live in single-parent households, 28% are children of prisoners, and 93% received free or reduced lunch. 90% of youth mentees improved or sustained on assets measured by the Youth Outcomes Survey: social acceptance, scholastic competence, educational expectations, academic performance/grades, risk attitudes, parental trust. Grant funding from The Memorial Foundation will help BBBS to reach their goal in 2018 to provide 1,205 children with one-to-one mentoring.

The Bridge Ministry

The Bridge Ministry collects clothing and non-perishable food items for distribution to help feed and clothe the homeless of Nashville through its various outreach ministry programs. The Memorial Foundation funding supports the following programs:

  • Church Under the Bridge: Every Tuesday evening since 2005, the Bridge Ministry has provided this weekly Christian outreach ministry under the Jefferson Street Bridge to Nashville’s homeless and working poor regardless of the weather. During the worship service, a team of about 100 volunteers serve a hot meal to the homeless. After the meal, a special guest speaker comes to teach. At the end of the worship service, volunteers distribute bags of groceries, clothing, blankets and hygiene items to those less fortunate. Weekly average attendance at Church Under the Bridge is between 350-500 people. The Bridge Ministry receives and distributes approximately 15,000 pounds of food each week from Second Harvest Food Bank. Last year, Bridge Ministry provided approximately 17,000 hot meals and donated almost 800,000 pounds of food as well as clothing and hygiene items.
  • Bridge to Kids: Bridge Ministry partners with thirty-one (31) local schools to fill each qualifying student’s backpack with healthy snacks every Friday so they would have food for the weekend. They are currently serving 2,300 students each week. Last year, the Bridge Ministry provided 48,404 food bags, which included four entrees and six snacks each, to children who would possibly be without food on the weekends.
  • Bridge To You: partners with over a dozen local organizations that serve the poor and homeless by providing them with food, clothing, and hygiene items.

Together, these and other recipient organizations are making a lasting impact in the lives of people in Middle Tennessee.