Initiatives and Projects

CAPGI/Waco Connect (Behavioral Health)

CAPGI/Waco Connect is a social care coordination service connecting local residents to community resources that support mental health and wellbeing. The Waco Connect steering team has been meeting throughout the year to collaboratively design a community mental health intervention since the planning grant’s kickoff earlier this spring. The effort aims to address social drivers of mental health using the Collaborative Approach to Public Goods Investment (CAPGI) financing model based on the work of Dr. Len Nichols at the Urban Institute.

Prosper Waco has engaged several partners from the non-profit, medical, and behavioral health community to develop the details of the Waco Connect intervention design. The service will provide social care coordination through a team of professionals who support Waco-McLennan County residents in navigating social resources that promote wellness. Social care coordination is all about identifying health-related social needs and connecting people to non-medical, community resources  that support health. Waco Connect seeks to decrease frequent use of emergency services including hospital EDs and law enforcement resources by connecting participants to existing safety net resources that can reduce mental health exacerbations and resulting emergency resource use.

The steering team is working to secure community investment to launch the program in 2021. To lend your expertise to this group, contact Tiffiney Gray at

Community Health Needs Assessment

The CHNA was funded through a collaboration of Waco-McLennan County Public Health District, Ascension Providence, Baylor Scott & White-Hillcrest, Family Health Center, Prosper Waco, and Baylor University Center for Community Research and Development. The goal of the CHNA is to provide a comprehensive and unbiased profile of McLennan County, assess community health and risk factors, and identify access to care issues.

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2018-2019 CHNA Report

Community Loan Center

The Community Loan Center of the Heart of Texas (CLCHOT) is a nonprofit alternative to payday and auto-titles lenders. Housed at Goodwill Industries, the CLCHOT partners with local employers to make these low-cost loans available to employees through payroll deduction.

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Continuity of Care Team (Behavioral Health)

The Continuity of Care Team is a data-gathering project to help community leaders better understand behavioral/mental health needs in Greater Waco. The CoC Operations Team meets weekly via Zoom calls. Five partner health organizations — Ascension DePaul Center, Ascension Providence, Baylor Scott & White-Hillcrest, Cenikor, and Heart of Texas Region MHMR — continue to collect information from clients who are being discharged and are willing to participate.

Thirty days after discharge, Tarleton State University at Waco’s Department of Social Work makes phone survey calls to participating clients, and soon survey calls will begin also at 180 days after discharge.

At the end of 2021, Prosper Waco’s research team will analyze the collected data.

For more information about the effort, contact coordinator Ferrell Foster (

HOPES (Healthy Outcomes through Prevention and Early Support)

HOPES (Healthy Outcomes through Prevention and Early Support), is a multi-year, state-funded program aimed at reducing child abuse and neglect by increasing community supports to parents of young children. The program administered by the Family Abuse Center and is for caregivers of children ages 0-5 in McLennan County. It is designed to align parents and caregivers alike with the tools they need to strengthen their family’s well-being. The grant provides two additional staff to Waco ISD’s Parents as Teachers program and created a coalition of agencies serving parents and children who will meet regularly to identify strategies for preventing child abuse before it occurs by educating families and providing support services to those children and families that are at risk. The HOPES program helps to address the School Readiness goal of the initiative. To learn more and see if you qualify to enroll, call 254-732-0482 or visit the HOPES page on the Family Abuse Center website.

Medical-Legal Partnership

Greater Waco Legal Services and Family Health Center are partnering to pilot a national model that trains healthcare providers to screen patients for legal needs that impact their health and refer them to attorneys for support.

Mental Health Jail Diversion Program

The McLennan County District Attorney’s office has partnered with Heart of Texas Region MHMR and Tarleton State University to implement mental health screening for individuals involved with the criminal justice system. This widely used model allows individuals with mental health needs to receive appropriate care instead of prosecution for minor offenses.

Nurse-Family Partnership

Housed at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center-Hillcrest, Nurse-Family Partnership is a free community healthcare program that provides pregnancy and parenting support to first-time mothers from nurses who visit their homes beginning in early pregnancy through the child’s second birthday.

Quick Response F.I.T. Trail System

The Live Well Waco Coalition and the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District launched the QR F.I.T. Trail System, which is an active lifestyle campaign. The City of Waco Parks and Recreation installed the QR F.I.T. Trail System in 11 Waco parks. At F.I.T. Trail neighborhood parks, a series of signposts placed along the walking trails feature a QR code park visitors can scan to access free workout instructional videos.

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Reintegration Program

This collaborative program, housed at Heart of Texas Region MHMR, provides individualized support to people who are returning to the community from incarceration.