RISE (Regional Intersectional Systems-change for Equity) of the Umpqua and Willamette Valleys

What is a Regional Health Equity Coalition (RHEC)?

  • Regional Health Equity Coalitions (RHECs) are community-driven, cross-sectoral groups that are not part of the government or coordinated care organizations. The RHEC model works by building on the inherent strengths of local communities to meaningfully involve them in identifying sustainable, long-term, policy, system and environmental solutions to increase health equity for communities of color, and those living at the intersection of race/ethnicity and other marginalized identities. 

What is Health Equity?

Populations of focus:  

  • Black/African Americans, Indigenous/Native Americans, Asian and Pacific Islander, Latinx, immigrant, LGBTQIA2S+, Disabled, low-income populations, and rural populations.

Backbone organization or fiscal agent:

  • TransPonder


Our mission is to work as a collective movement to center around the needs and voices of underserved/ underrepresented community members to address the root causes of health inequities caused by systemic oppression utilizing an intersectional lens.


Our vision is to remove barriers surrounding all inequities and allow individuals the opportunity to lead healthy and fulfilling lives as they see fit.

Goals/ Activities:

  • Determine the needs and concerns of the people of Lane and Douglas Counties 
    • Create, distribute, and report on a community needs assessment. This will include a survey, focus groups and town halls.
  • Advocate for health equity in the State Legislature
    • Engage with legislators around policies that address health inequities. 
    • Testify, sign-on (support policy), and submit written testimony supporting legislation that enhances health equity.
    • Work with community partners and stakeholders (community based organizations, underserved/ underrepresented individuals, public health departments, and coordinated care organizations) to advocate for health equity.
    • Work with other RHECs to advocate for health equity.
    • Share updates about the legislative session with the RHEC members and community partners.

How We Operate:

We operate by using collective impact principles to encourage community support to address systemic barriers to health care. RISE has a leadership committee that provides direction and has decision-making power to lead the staff and the rest of the RHEC. All of the members of RISE meet monthly in a general meeting where we give updates on policy, systems change, and community resources. We also assemble committees for projects such as our yearly Health Equity Needs Assessment. 

The RISE of the Umpqua and Willamette Valleys manager and coordinator also meet with staff of other RHECs across the state to strategize around legislation and to update each other on best practices and lessons learned. This information then influences our recommendations to Leadership, other committees, and the rest of the RHEC members and community partners. We strive to make sure that we are working in as efficient and effective ways as possible.