Collaborative Approaches to
Well-being in Rural Texas

In 2018 the Hogg Foundation awarded $410,000 to five rural, Texas communities to address a lack of understanding in how communities support resilience and mental health, inequities, community grown disparities, and community-driven solutions. The engaged communities include Bastrop, Brooks, Morris, Nacogdoches, and Victoria Counties.

What factors are essential for effective cross-sector alignment ?

Shared Purpose

  • Overall focus is “upstream” issues and root causes of “injustices that affect marginalized communities” regarding mental health.
  • Each location has flexibility in determining their collaborative approach but must use best-practice models that address systems level change, be committed to shared learning, plan for community inclusion and participation, and share decision-making and leadership opportunities with historically excluded populations.
  • Over 52.0% of partners surveyed, who are engaged in this initiative, indicated the alignment effort has a shared purpose with established priorities.


  • The Alliance for Greater Works served as the grant coordinator in the past to provide technical assistance.
  • The initiative includes five collaborations (within five Texas counties) with different governance structures, objectives, and priorities.
  • Participating organizations use a common agenda which lays out goals and  budget for a 5-year period.


  • The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health provides evaluation-based consultation to the five sites.
  • Each collaborative has individual data system.

Finance and Sustainability

  • The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health provided substantial funding to the five individual coalitions plus the grant coordinator in rural Texas for the first 8 years with very few stipulations.
  • The foundation sends RFPs/funding opportunities to member orgs frequently.
  • Almost 60.0% initiative partners indicated their site had established sustainable financing.

Integration of Health Equity

  • Defines as ensuring people have equal access and equal opportunities to health systems in their community, such as access to care, clean water, a clean living environment, and transportation
  • Embeds in the shared purpose and vision of the initiative and an explicit goal for many member organizations

Community Trust and Accountability

  • Engages historically excluded voices and populations by interviewing and inviting them to share their needs 
  • Gets involved in community engagement and trust building activities
  • Holds sites accountable to the community

Measures of Success

  • Development of “indigenous leadership”
  • Developing a “shared value system” to describe impact
  • Different measures of success across the five collaboratives

Outcomes Achieved

  • Funded broad infrastructure in designated communities while making progress on racial tensions through collaboration
  • Shared progress towards community goals and progress toward health equity