Neighborhood Health Leaders Program

Apply to become a New Haven Health Leader

CARE offers a leadership program for graduate students and New Haven residents to work together on solutions to pressing social and health issues identified by the community. Meadeshia Mitchell and Cerella Craig are the graduate student leaders for this year; Jacquelyn Pheanious and Makia Richardson are the resident leaders. The residents are working in collaboration with other neighborhood residents and SCSU students and faculty throughout the planning and implementation of neighborhood-based health projects.

The Health Leaders are paired for a co-learning experience focused on health inequities, Community-Based Participatory Research, and community organizing methods. Residents work alongside the student and faculty partners to build relationships with other neighborhood leaders and community organizations to develop health activities and initiatives. 

SCSU-CARE Community Garden & Health Education Program

SCSU Community Garden

CARE and the Office of Sustainability partner with New Haven Farms to offer a 6-week garden-based health education program. The purpose of this program is to provide New Haven residents with nutrition education, resources, and access to fresh produce.

The program launched in the summer of 2017. Two MPH interns, Meadeshia Mitchell and Abby Putzer, created the curriculum. The curriculum was adapted from New Haven Farms’ Farm-Based Wellness Program, targeting chronic disease risk factors. Twenty New Haven residents participated in weekly nutrition lessons, cooking demonstrations, recipes, and gardening seminars. Program participants received shares of seasonal produce from the garden.

Successes

Sustainability interns Kaelyn Audette (Public Health) and Megan McNivens (Psychology) learned improved farming methods from New Haven Farms to more than double the seasonal yield at the garden, distributing a total of more than 400 pounds of produce. Most of this was donated to local soup kitchens and community pantries throughout the growing season.

80% of the participants said that their view of the value of gardening and growing their own food had been changed since the beginning of the program.

Several participants expressed that the program resulted in their increased consumption of vegetables over less healthy food options.

All participants reported that they made friends at the program with other members, and felt welcomed by the program staff.

Community Collaborations

CARE works closely with multiple partners to tackle New Haven’s most pressing health issues. CARE has been an active member of the New Haven Food Policy Council, the Food Access Working Group, the Healthier Greater New Haven Partnership, and the Yale Center for Research Engagement, among others.