Nationwide Foundation helping Columbus’ Linden neighborhood amidst affordable housing crisis

$10 million donation in 2021 to Pediatric Innovation Fund at Nationwide Children’s Hospital brings total to $130 million

May 27, 2021

COLUMBUS, Ohio – As a crisis in housing affordability grips children and families across central Ohio, the Nationwide Foundation is committing substantial resources to a Nationwide Children’s Hospital program focused on creating positive health, economic development and affordable housing outcomes in Columbus’ Linden neighborhood.

It’s part of a new, $10 million gift that The Nationwide Foundation is making to Nationwide Children’s Hospital. Some of the funding will also support the creation of a new endowed chair to position Nationwide Children’s as a leader in child organ transplantation along with other innovative research programs.

$2 million for Linden-based affordable housing
Funding from the 2021 Innovation Fund gift will inject $2 million in capital into Nationwide Children’s Healthy Neighborhoods, Healthy Families to create single-family affordable housing units in Linden.

“Affordable and safe housing is a pressing issue for Columbus and Linden residents,” said Nationwide CEO and Nationwide Foundation Chairman Kirt Walker. “We’re excited that the Nationwide Foundation can play a role in the development of more affordable options in Linden through Nationwide Children’s Healthy Neighborhoods, Healthy Families initiative.”

In 2020, the Nationwide Children’s Healthy Neighbors, Healthy Families program expanded to Linden in alignment with the ONE Linden plan, a vision developed by Linden neighborhood community leaders and the city of Columbus. Nationwide Children’s has been a primary care provider for children in Linden for 25 years and their experience in mixed income housing will help address housing needs identified by the community.

New Endowed Chair in Pediatric Transplantation
Another significant focus of funding for the new $10 million gift will support the creation of the Nationwide Foundation Endowed Chair in Pediatric Transplantation. With the creation of the chair, Nationwide Children’s role as a leader in pediatric transplantation will grow and help ensure no child has to leave central Ohio for world-class transplantation care.

“Each year, Nationwide Children’s provides more than 1.6 million patient visits to children from all 50 states and more than 50 countries worldwide,” said Tim Robinson, Chief Executive Officer, Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “Tremendous support, generosity, and partnership from Nationwide and the Nationwide Foundation has helped firmly position ourselves as a community treasure and in the top tier of pediatric institutions internationally. Among the countless impacts of their support are the creation of prestigious endowed chairs, which have allowed us to recruit some of the world’s most talented physicians and researchers to central Ohio – and to nurture the international expertise that already existed here. We are grateful for the continued, transformational philanthropy of the Nationwide Foundation. It is changing lives for the children and families we serve. ”

Other programs benefitting from the new $10M gift:

  • The Pediatric Innovation Fund will support the hospital’s behavioral health research program, with funding that contributes to the recruitment and support of nationally known researchers across a range of specialty areas that include mood and anxiety disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and behavioral health clinical trials. In tandem, this year’s gift will also support Nationwide Children’s Hospital’s On Our Sleeves®, the movement for childhood mental health that has attracted both local and national partners.
  • The Nationwide Foundation Pediatric Innovation Fund will also continue to benefit the hospital’s Steve and Cindy Rasmussen Institute for Genomic Medicine (IGM). Established in 2016 the IGM remains one of the few programs in pediatric personalized genomic medicine in the U.S. and focuses on genomics as the root cause of many childhood diseases. This year’s funding will be used to acquire additional equipment, technology, and testing capabilities to advance genomic research.

Nationwide Foundation’s support of Nationwide Children’s Hospital
The Nationwide Foundation established the Pediatric Innovation Fund in 2014 to target strategic investments in pediatric and community health and to accelerate the most promising research and clinical discoveries at Nationwide Children’s. So far, the foundation has contributed $80 million to the fund, including the 2021 gift. With the Nationwide Foundation’s initial $50 million donation, its contributions have now reached $130 million. In addition, Nationwide’s sports marketing programs have raised an additional $44 million to support hospital programs.
“The last year has been an incredibly difficult one for so many in our community, amplifying challenges that are confronting our central Ohio community,” Walker said. “The Nationwide Foundation is proud to be able to make a difference by partnering with Nationwide Children’s Hospital on solutions for our community and on critically important research that makes an impact and improves the welfare of children and their families. When we work together, we can accomplish truly amazing things.” 

About The Nationwide Foundation
The Nationwide Foundation is a nonprofit, private foundation to which Nationwide companies are the donors. Founded in 1959, the Nationwide Foundation has contributed more than $550 million since 2000 to help nonprofit organizations in communities where Nationwide associates and their families live and work.

About Nationwide
Nationwide, a Fortune 100 company based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the United States. Nationwide is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. An industry leader in driving customer-focused innovation, Nationwide provides a full range of insurance and financial services products including auto, business, homeowners, farm and life insurance; public and private sector retirement plans, annuities and mutual funds; excess & surplus, specialty and surety; pet, motorcycle and boat insurance. For more information, visit www.nationwide.com. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Nationwide, Nationwide is on your side and the Nationwide N and Eagle are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. © 2021

About Nationwide Children's Hospital

Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report’s 2020-21 list of “Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric health care systems providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children and adolescents, as well as adult patients with congenital disease. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 13,000 providing state-of-the-art pediatric care during more than 1.6 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Abigail Wexner Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. More information is available at NationwideChildrens.org.