Magnolia Project

The Magnolia Project is a special federally-funded Healthy Start initiative to improve the health and well-being of women during their childbearing years (15–44 years old) as well as fathers in 32208, 32209, 32211 and 32277 ZIP Codes by empowering communities to address social determinants of health, toxic stress, poverty and social inequity with family, community, health/medical and social support.

The Magnolia Project offers clinical and case management services for women before, during and after pregnancy  in the city’s central urban core and adjacent area. The target area for implementation of the Magnolia Project was selected due to the high infant mortality rate and racial disparities. Our goal is to work with women to address risk factors (pregnancy intervals, nutrition issues, substance/alcohol abuse, psychosocial problems, family planning and other issues) that impact their health and may affect a future pregnancy. We also offer counseling, group classes/workshops, financial planning support and workforce development for fathers.

The Magnolia Project was implemented in 1999 to address an identified gap in the system of maternal and child health services directly linked to health disparities in infant mortality — pre- and inter-conception care. The Project is a recognized leader in the development, implementation and evaluation of preconception health and related interventions using a life course approach and serves as an important community entry point for women seeking both prenatal and well-woman care, especially family planning services.

Since the implementation of the Magnolia Project, infant mortality rates for the original ZIP Codes have remained a part of the primary target area until the most recent grant cycle (2020). The Black infant mortality rate for the primary area averaged around 20 per 1,000 live births from 1997 to 2006 (see chart). While there was a temporary decrease in 2002, the downward trend took hold in 2006 and went as low as 7.4 per 1,000 in 2014. While the rates rose after 2014, the overall trend (1997-2021) for Black infants in the target area has been a decline (UNF-CCI, 2023).

The project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Our delivery model includes:

  • Women’s health services/well woman care
  • Toxic stress education and mitigation
  • Community health workers/Communication Action Network
  • Prenatal care
  • Doula services
  • Telehealth
  • Life Course group education
  • Case management
  • Home visitation
  • Health education
  • Nutrition counseling
  • Mental health
  • Fatherhood programs

Our partners:

Evidence-based & research-informed programs, curricula:

Please contact Project Director Marsha Davis at or 904.353.2130, ext. 1005 for more information.