Cleveland, Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio Baldwin Wallace University

: 385,525
Project focus: Access to foods that support healthy eating patterns
Access to health services


  • Hire and train 6 OB and CF residents and 6 public health students as CHENs who will improve their knowledge, skills, and self-efficacy regarding prevalence of food insecurity and health inequities that exist in OB and their ability to effectively serve as OB CNs
  • Screen 300 low-income families and identify and enroll 150 most vulnerable to food insecurity
  • Improve access to food resources and support services, measured by resource utilization and intake of healthy food (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy) by one serving per day for at least 90 percent of the most vulnerable families
  • Improve nutritional health outcomes including BMI, blood pressure, and waist circumference as a result of using available food resources and support services referred by CHENs for at least 70 percent of the most vulnerable families
  • Establish a Community Navigators in Cleveland Neighborhoods (CNiCN) Advisory Board to oversee the pilot of the CN integration in OB and CF neighborhoods and strategize scale-out of the framework to other Cleveland neighborhoods suffering from food insecurity
  • Assess collective impact in target communities

Partners and Approach
Baldwin Wallace University, along with Old Brooklyn Community Development Corporation, MetroHealth System and Cleveland Department of Public Health, took an all-hands-on-deck approach to advance health equity through their CHANGE INC. program. The work of local residents and students was key to bringing this innovative strategy to life. The project team trained multiple Community Health and Empowerment Navigators to connect community residents to available services in their city. 

Successes (as of September 2022)
These navigators interacted with hundreds of residents and were integrated into popular spaces within Cleveland in order to improve the food security of the community’s most vulnerable residents. These navigators were not only trained to screen families for food insecurity, but also to connect them to supportive services. They also offered ongoing guidance and referrals to these families, developing long-lasting relationships with community members within Cleveland and beyond.

To further support connections to the community, the team launched a Unite Us account for the CHANGE INC. program in which community agencies, physicians, medical professionals and others could directly refer residents to the program because of their struggles with food insecurity. Not only that, but one CHEN helped to connect partners within the community, which will support the development of a new Food as Medicine clinic. With the training program and partnerships in place, the team will continue to grow their program to new sites across Cleveland and by establishing new navigator positions, bridging even more service providers to community members in need! 

Snapshot 1 (July - December 2020) | Snapshot 2 (January - June 2021) | Snapshot 3 (July - December 2021)

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