Zuckerman Family Foundation

Chronic diseases – such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, and arthritis – are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health problems in the United States. Southern Arizona has some of the highest rates of chronic disease in the nation, and the poorest people and communities often have the poorest health. In the past 30 years, overweight and obesity have increased sharply among low-income adults and children in Southern Arizona.¹


The Zuckerman Family Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit private foundation founded by Mel and Enid Zuckerman. In the past 30 years, Mel and Enid Zuckerman have founded Canyon Ranch, the Canyon Ranch Life Enhancement Program®, Canyon Ranch Institute, the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health at the University of Arizona, and have supported countless other community and academic programs to promote health and well-being using the integrative health model.

In 2007, Mel and Enid Zuckerman and their Canyon Ranch co-founder Jerry Cohen instructed Canyon Ranch Institute to gather, compile, and disseminate the intellectual property of Canyon Ranch using the best practices in public health. The purpose is to help economically disadvantaged people and communities prevent disease before it occurs. For example, Canyon Ranch Institute has implemented the Canyon Ranch Life Enhancement Program (CRI LEP) with health care organizations in low-income communities. The CRI LEP helps prevent chronic diseases through a rigorously evaluated, integrative health literacy approach. The CRI LEPs are tailored based on the cultural, geographic, and health needs of each community.

The first program made possible by the Zuckerman Family Foundation is the Canyon Ranch Institute Life Enhancement Program with El Rio Community Health Center in Tucson, AZ.

How We’re Making a Difference

With a grant from the Zuckerman Family Foundation, the CRI Life Enhancement Program with El Rio, Tucson, AZ aims to eliminate health disparities and empower people in Tucson’s economically disadvantaged communities to prevent chronic disease and embrace a life of wellness.