Home Fitness guide 2022 Healthy Eating and Active Living Mini-Grants Awarded to Cambridge Organizations

2022 Healthy Eating and Active Living Mini-Grants Awarded to Cambridge Organizations

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The Cambridge Public Health Department, through its Cambridge in Motion campaign, has awarded a total of $12,500 in mini-grants to 13 local organizations to develop activities that promote healthy eating and active living.

“We had a record number of applications this spring and it was inspiring to see so many programs seeking to make positive changes to healthy eating and physical activity in Cambridge,” said Dawn Olcott, Head of Services for Public Health Nutrition for Cambridge Public Health Service. .

The 2022 mini-grant winners and their projects are:

  • Cambridge Bike Giving Backwhich donates bicycles to Cambridge residents in need, will host community events in the harbour, Alewife area and Cambridgeside Shopping Center which will include free giveaways of refurbished bicycles and a bike rodeo with a professional training.
  • Cambridge City Producers will help low-income residents grow food at home by helping them build beds, providing seedlings and hosting weekly meetings to share knowledge.
  • The Cambridge Economic Opportunity Committee (CEOC) will solicit feedback from food pantry customers on their most-wanted food items through in-person and online surveys. Results will be shared with pantry managers so they can adjust food orders and share recipes.
  • The Community Arts Center will expand its yoga therapy program for children to include strategies for coping with stress and trauma, including mind-body awareness.
    Equity Roadmap’s Friday Night Hype mentorship program will host a monthly community gathering for college students and their families, which will include a healthy meal. Children will engage in conversation and physical activity with a mentor.
  • Haggerty Nursery School will purchase gross motor skills equipment, such as tactile balls, balance boards and scooters, which require whole-body movement and improve children’s balance, muscle development and coordination. This equipment will help kids develop skills they might not have the opportunity to learn at home.
  • The Helping Hand Food Pantry’s Spice It Up Project will purchase spices used in traditional cooking so that customers can prepare healthy dishes from their home country.
  • IRH, an affordable housing nonprofit, will host Adventure Kids, a series of free monthly outdoor activities for youth and families who live in HRI housing. Activities will include yoga, rock climbing, hiking, navigation skills and treasure hunts.
  • Mass Farmers Markets will show SNAP recipients how to maximize the benefits they have received from different agencies when shopping at local farmers’ markets. The team will recruit SNAP users to review a new SNAP buyer’s guide to ensure content is clear and understandable.
  • Newtowne School, a family cooperative preschool, will create a community-centered edible garden. Toddlers and preschoolers will help plant and harvest the garden, learn about healthy eating, cooking and sharing food with the First Church Cambridge homeless community.
  • Prospect Hill Academy will work with a local gardening program and a multicultural cooking teacher to educate elementary school teachers and children about nature, international foods and healthy eating through pollinator visits to the woods, gardening and cooking with fresh and healthy ingredients.
  • Violetta Montessori School cultivate budding gardeners by involving children and their families in growing vegetables for snacks in two established garden plots at the Squirrel Brand Garden. The mini-grant will fund gardening tools and supplies, gardening books and other items.
  • Cambridge Women’s Y will distribute healthy “to-go” bags to all clients of Tanner Residence, as part of an outreach effort to connect residents of the women’s shelter to services. The goodie bags will include fresh food, information on low-cost grocery and health services, and Daily Table coupons.

Healthy eating and active living is one of the city’s three priority health areas. The other two priority areas are mental health and community/social resilience.

The 2022 mini-grants are funded by Cambridge Public Health, with additional funding from the city’s Birth to Year 3 Partnership for the Violetta Montessori School Grant. The Cambridge in Motion Mini-Grants have been offered since 2012.

The mini-grants scheme is a partnership between the Cambridge Public Health Department, the Cambridge Food and Fitness Policy Council and the City of Cambridge.

For more information, contact Dawn Olcott at Cambridge Public Health, [email protected] or 617-665-3809.