ClearWay Minnesota(SM) grants to bring cessation help to low-income tobacco users

New approach will help reach Minnesotans who smoke at high rates

Jul 16, 2015, 16:06 ET from ClearWay Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS, July 16, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The ClearWay Minnesota Board of Directors today approved five new grants to community-based organizations serving Minnesotans of low socioeconomic status. The grants will fund these organizations to create pathways to quit-smoking help for the low-income tobacco users they already serve.

"We know from research that low-income people smoke at higher rates and have a heavy health burden from tobacco use," said David Willoughby, Chief Executive Officer at ClearWay Minnesota. "Our Community Engagement grants will bring quit-smoking help to some of the individuals who need it most."

Totaling $152,000, the new grants will fund 12-month projects at five organizations:

  • Dakota Wicohan, an American Indian nonprofit organization located in rural southwestern Minnesota ($26,000);
  • Portico Healthnet, a nonprofit health and human services organization that helps uninsured Minnesotans access affordable health coverage and care ($21,000);
  • Sub-Saharan African Youth and Family Services of Minnesota, a nonprofit human service agency serving African communities in Minnesota ($38,000);
  • Touchstone Mental Health, a Hennepin County nonprofit organization providing services to individuals whose lives are affected by mental illness ($17,000); and
  • Vietnamese Social Services of Minnesota, an agency that addresses the needs of Vietnamese families and individuals ($50,000).

Socioeconomic status is one of the greatest predictors of smoking. In Minnesota, 24 percent of adult smokers are in the lowest income bracket, and among those with education levels lower than a college degree, one in every five people smokes.

"We know that community-based organizations understand how to meet the needs of the populations they serve," said Willoughby. "With this funding, these organizations will be able to devise their own approaches to addressing tobacco use, and to make a real difference in the lives of the individuals and families they serve."

ClearWay Minnesota funded eight other Community Engagement grants in May.

About ClearWay MinnesotaSM
ClearWay Minnesota is an independent nonprofit organization that improves the health of Minnesotans by reducing the harm caused by tobacco. ClearWay Minnesota serves Minnesota through its grant-making program, QUITPLAN® stop-smoking services and statewide outreach activities. It is funded with 3 percent of the state's 1998 tobacco settlement. For more information on ClearWay Minnesota or QUITPLAN Services, call 952-767-1400 or visit


SOURCE ClearWay Minnesota