Health Starts at Home Consultant Request for Proposals


The Boston Foundation
Learning Community Facilitator


The Boston Foundation seeks to engage a dynamic consultant to assist with the development and facilitation of a learning community (LC) for the Health Starts at Home (HSAH) initiative. HSAH is a multiyear demonstration project that works at the intersection of healthcare and housing to improve children’s health outcomes. The HSAH learning community brings together institutional partners within the housing and health sectors to participate in quarterly meetings that create a shared space that encourages both quality improvements of current interventions and the development of a policy advocacy plan.

We seek an experienced professional to work in partnership with the Boston Foundation’s program leadership to engage our institutional partners in a process that will result in increased efficacy and capacity to successfully implement the objectives of the HSAH initiative.

Ideally, the consultant will have: 1) expertise in leading a collaborative process to advance policy and/or systems level change to improve population health; 2) experience in facilitating processes involving cross-sector collaboration; and 3) working knowledge of ongoing local and national efforts that can be leveraged to increase the likelihood of achieving the targeted outcomes of the HSAH model – outcomes which were defined in collaboration with our institutional partners. Key consultant activities include but are not limited to the following:

  • In partnership with the Boston Foundation’s program leadership and lead evaluation partners, develop meeting agendas that leverage partner feedback, and employ facilitation methods that guide the group in achieving tangible intermediary outcomes relevant to advancing the overarching objectives of the HSAH model.
  • Create conditions that lead to increased learning opportunities and a shared understanding of the ways in which our partners’ respective housing and health systems function in Greater Boston.
  • Foster an inclusive learning community that seeks to maximize participant engagement and honors feedback of key staff at all levels.
  • Provide content expertise and strategic guidance to the HSAH cohort on health and housing policy advocacy opportunities.
  • Assist with the finalization of a communications and dissemination plan. 

Preference will be given to candidates with experience working with learning communities of similar sizes (30 participants) and similar organizational structures (hospitals and housing organizations), as well as topical expertise. Preference will also be given to those who are in a position to start this work in April 2018.


Health Starts At Home is an initiative hosted by the Boston Foundation that brings together several local and national funders, as well as housing and healthcare organizations, to demonstrate the positive benefits of stable, affordable housing on children’s health outcomes. We have four distinct interventions underway, which are led by hospital and housing partners across Boston and Chelsea. This four-year project is in its second year of implementation and the project period will end in May 2019. Find additional information on the HSAH initiative on our website. 

The HSAH Learning Community (LC) convenes the core evaluators, local funders and established institutional partners/grantees across the health and housing sectors to:

  • Foster a sense of community; strengthen networks and increase social cohesion;
  • Provide a safe space for partners to share challenges, successes, lessons learned and best practices;
  • Brainstorm practical solutions to overcome implementation challenges;
  • Share tools and information and deliver subject matter expertise to strengthen implementation of the intervention along with dissemination of key findings; and
  • Assist with crafting compelling narratives and key messages about the benefits of the HSAH model for a wide spectrum of audience members, including community residents. 

Throughout the first year, the HSAH LC created opportunities for grantees, in partnership with local funders and evaluators, to achieve the goals outlined above. Support in year 2 will enable the continuation of these efforts with an explicit focus on finalizing a communication plan for dissemination of HSAH findings, policy advocacy and sustainability.

Project Deliverables and Timeline:

  • Agenda development for three LC meetings during the 2018 calendar year
  • Content management before and after LC meetings
  • Evaluation of participant experience
  • Finalized communications plan
  • Final summary report at the end of 2018 

Proposed Timeline for upcoming 2018 LC Meetings:

  • May 2018: HSAH LC #2 of 2018
  • September 2018: HSAH LC #3
  • November 2018: HSAH LC #4
  • December 2018: Submit final report

Please submit the following application materials to BfcGNjM6qi5nHezU27RV6pjU4+UfkzzTrvqvZw6Wo14ydLo+3EQwfHviHxeaKGsCUyxa4iCoFSSSbSC16BaL3KtPXfzZtYnUqmLdlmVDpqZWddgNwj6Ym51sqQ6HZk3ejdWlzw5AqObxwda8WVVlmg==.

  • Resume/CV
  • Written answers to the following questions and prompts:
  1. What are the benefits of allocating resources to foster collaboration between the health and housing sectors to improve community health?
  2. Please describe your past experience facilitating processes that involve cross-sector collaborations to advance policy and/or systems change efforts.
  3. Briefly describe your approach to guiding this learning community cohort to actualize the goals outlined above for the HSAH intervention.
  4. What do you think is needed to build this cohort’s capacity for advocacy and policy change at the intersection of health and housing in Greater Boston?

Criteria for Evaluation:

Selection Domain

Application Selection Criteria

To earn full points in each domain, the applicant must demonstrate:


Ability to Deliver

  • Understanding of the scope of the project and related tools for actualizing the HSAH intervention goals
  • Strong facilitation and communications skills, understanding of adult learning needs and content knowledge


Experience and Education

  • Experience facilitating past cohorts of partners, specifically housing and healthcare organizations
  • Deep knowledge of the intersection of housing and health policy and healthcare reform in the Boston and Massachusetts context


Interpersonal Skills & Cultural Competency

  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • Familiarity with different learning styles and ability to develop consensus among a group with different perspectives
  • Knowledge of health equity and social justice principles as they relate to improving community health
  • Ability to implement an equity framework
  • Ability to work with various stakeholders in the health and housing space
  • Approachability and willingness to work collaboratively with various stakeholders: grantee partners, institutional partners, Boston Foundation staff


Proposed Budget

  • Reasonableness of proposed budget ($50,000), inclusive of preparation and delivery





Schedule of Activities:

The Boston Foundation will make a good faith effort to follow the timeline below for evaluating, negotiating and selecting a consultant for this process.

UPDATE: Due to the recent snow days, we have revised the below timeline:

New Submission deadline: March 23, 2018

Proposals reviewed: March 23-March 26

Final candidates interviewed: March 26-April 13

Decision finalized: April 20, 2018