Grant helps Action Wellness get clients to appointments


A Philadelphia nonprofit that helps thousands of people deal with chronic illnesses just got a big reward so it can help even more.

Action Wellness received a Penn Medicine CAREs grant for $1,800 that executive director Kevin Burns said would be used to cover some “transportation expenses for clients who are unable to use public transportation to get to urgent or emergency medical and social service appointments.”

Burns said Penn Medicine employees nominate programs and in the case of Action Wellness, that person is one of their buddy volunteers, Jessica Tang.

When Tang isn’t working at Penn, she gives clients emotional support, companionship and some help with the tasks of daily living.

This is the first Penn CAREs grant Action Wellness has received. The organization started as Action AIDS in 1986. Thirty years later, it broadened its scope and changed its name.

Action Wellness has five offices and more than 30 host sites. It helps more than 4,000 clients of all ages living with chronic illnesses every year.

Penn Medicine started its CAREs Grant program to support people and community organizations that work to improve the health and wellbeing of others.

— Lenny Cohen