If investing $100 on cultivating health yields $200 in lowered costs and improved outcomes, shouldn’t individuals and communities act based on this knowledge?
Angel investor Esther Dyson founded Wellville to answer this question.
Wellville is a 10-year national nonprofit project with two objectives:
- Improve Equitable Wellbeing: Wellville is supporting five U.S. communities (the “W5”) to improve equitable wellbeing through effective, shared investments that have long-term benefits for all.
- Influence National Action: By showcasing evidence and actions in the W5, Wellville will influence how our nation invests in its people, institutions and systems to achieve equitable wellbeing for all Americans for generations to come.
Our Diagnosis of the Problem
We believe that America’s deteriorating health and growing inequities are the result of short-term thinking. This thinking has resulted in people, institutions and systems that, too often, pit their immediate self-interest over the long-term, equitable wellbeing of all.
In the end, short-term thinking serves neither individual nor shared interests. It causes us to spend more of our nation’s resources to remediate problems (such as illness, crime and poverty) rather than invest in conditions that magnify our collective potential: healthy environments, strong families and resilient communities. These conditions not only promote health and wellbeing, but also generate positive social and economic returns that benefit all.
Our Guiding Policy: Prioritize the Future for Common Good
Equitable wellbeing happens when everyone has a fair and just opportunity to construct a life well-lived and contribute to our common good.
This is possible only when we pay attention to the gaps – and what causes the gaps – and change how we think, act and invest together over the long haul. Achieving equitable wellbeing means prioritizing the future that benefits all of us.
- Deploy five Wellville National Advisors (with additional support from our Wellville Advisory Board, evaluator and partners) who work together with local teams in the W5 over 10 years to improve equitable wellbeing through effective, shared, long-term investment in their communities’ people, institutions (public and private), systems.
- Forge national partnerships that:
- improve the W5’s capacity to achieve and sustain equitable wellbeing; and
- advocate for local and national policies, actions and investments that will improve equitable wellbeing of all Americans.
- Implement a cross-community evaluation and learning system to track and improve W5 actions and outcomes and to facilitate sharing.
- Help the W5 conduct social and economic impact analyses that detail current and predicted outcomes (including positive and negative externalities), counterfactuals, and the value of proposed/implemented solutions.
- Communicate recommended policies, actions and investments to national influencers through data and stories.