News & Progress

Communities Adopt WeTHRIVE! Overall Resolutions  

August 2014 – Twelve Hamilton County communities have adopted the WeTHRIVE! Overall Resolution, including: Anderson Township, Arlington Heights, Crosby Township, Evendale, Lincoln Heights, Lockland, Mt. Healthy, North Bend,  Reading, Saint Bernard, Silverton, and Woodlawn. The WeTHRIVE! Overall Resolution solidifies the community’s commitment to achieving a healthy, thriving community. Read more about how each community thrives!


North Bend Opens New Park

July 2014 – The Village of North Bend celebrated the grand opening of the Presidential Community Park on June 21, 2014. The new park, furnished with playground equipment, four square, picnic tables, and a basketball court, was a collaborative effort of many organizations and individuals. The City of Montgomery donated a playground structure to help make the new recreation space a reality in North Bend. Western Hills Lowe’s and Home Depot donated landscaping, picnic tables, and volunteers to assemble and paint the picnic tables, as well as other construction materials. Read more about the playground opening and other organizations that contributed to the effort!


WeTHRIVE! Awards Community Mini-Grants

Spring 2013Hamilton County Public Health (HCPH) awarded WeTHRIVE! mini-grants to North Avondale, North Bend, and the Connecting Active Communities Coalition, which includes Blue Ash, Evendale, Glendale, Lockland, Montgomery, Reading, Sharonville, Woodlawn, and Wyoming. Mini-grant recipients receive technical assistance and funding as part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Healthy Kids Healthy Communities (HKHC) grant. HCPH is mentoring communities through the process of (1) establishing a wellness committee, (2) completing a community health assessment, (3) adopting a wellness resolution and (4) developing a health action plan that includes policy and environmental change strategies to will promote and sustain community health promotion initiatives. Go here to see what past WeTHRIVE! mini-grant communities have accomplished.

yard sign

Child Care Centers Adopt WeTHRIVE! Resolution
The WeTHRIVE! Child Care Wellness Policy has been adopted by 103 child care centers located in Amberley Village, Anderson, Avondale, Blue Ash, Camp Washington, Cheviot, Clifton, Colerain, Corryville, Delhi, Finneytown, Forest Park, Greenhills, Harrison, Lincoln Heights, Lockland, Loveland, Lower Price Hill, Millvale, Montgomery, Mt. Airy, Mt. Healthy, Newtown, North College Hill, Northgate, Norwood, Oakley, Price Hill, Sharonville, Silverton, Symmes Township, Walnut Hills, West End, Westwood, Winton Hills and Woodlawn. As a result, nearly 10,650 children now enjoy healthier food and beverage options and more opportunities for physical activity. Go here to find out more and to see the list of child care centers in Hamilton County that are THRIVING!

First WeTHRIVE! photo contest winner announced
August 2013—Pamela Taylor is the winner of our first How WeTHRIVE! Photo Contest. For submitting the winning photo, she received a three-month YMCA membership. See Pamela's photo at right and watch for another contest coming soon. Details are on the WeTHRIVE! facebook page.

WeTHRIVE! Releases Reports

Hamilton County Public Health recently released two WeTHRIVE! reports. Find the WeTHRIVE! Annual Report here and the WeTHRIVE! Food Access Report here.

logo we thrive

New community pathways in North College Hill

September 2012—North College Hill's WeTHRIVE! team identified three sidewalk routes that connect vital parts of the city, such as the elementary, middle and high schools, the City Center building and the business district. To encourage residents to walk to these places—where they would normally drive—the city used WeTHRIVE Community Wellness Mini-Grant funds to make improvements to 1700 square feet of sidewalks. Blue NCH MOVES! footprints mark the 1-, 2- and 3-mile pathways. Read more in NCH's blog post and on the NCH WeTHRIVE! page

Blue NCH Moves footprints mark new pathways in North College Hill


More opportunities to be active in Norwood
July 2012—Thanks to the Norwood WeTHRIVE! team, the city’s 19,000 residents now have more options for outdoor recreation. Xavier University has agreed to open its tennis, sand volleyball and basketball courts, sports fields and nature trail to residents. New red footprints painted along city sidewalks mark one-mile paths for walking. Gardeners are at work on the new community garden in Northwoods Park. And city parks have new playground quality mulch, making play equipment safer for active children. Find out more about how Norwood is thriving here.

Amberley Trail Expands Village Hall Walking Track
June 2012—Thanks to the Amberley Village WeTHRIVE! team and youth volunteers from Amberley, Cincinnati and Israel, people using Amberley’s Village Hall paved walking path can now extend their walk into the woods of French Park. On June 22, volunteers built a small bridge in the park just off Ridge Road and across the street from Village Hall. The bridge takes you from a new trailhead onto the Amberley Trail in the park. Learn more about this and other projects completed by Amberley here.
WeTHRIVE! yard sign marks head of Amberley Trail in French Park

WeTHRIVE! and the YMCA help 23,019 residents get active
In June 2010, WeTHRIVE! partnered with the YMCA of Greater Cincinnati to increase residents’ access to physical activity by offering low-cost YMCA memberships. Between June 2010 and February 2012, the YMCA issued 7,464 subsidized memberships, providing 23,019 community members with access to a safe place to exercise. One new member, a single mom with three children, described how being able to join the Y has impacted her life: “My stress level has decreased, my children are becoming more physically fit, and as a family, we are thriving… I am ever so grateful for my subsidized membership and will never forget the help which has been given to me." Download an application here.

Produce markets serve food desert communities

Eight Do Right! Produce Markets were established in five of Hamilton County’s lowest-income communities, reaching more than 80,000 residents. The sites include three Cincinnati Public Schools, three churches in predominantly African American neighborhoods and community locations in two of the poorest neighborhoods in greater Cincinnati. At the school sites, volunteers sell pre-filled bags of produce after school for $5 each to students, parents and residents. The church and community sites are set up as traditional farmers markets and stocked by a local produce distributor. See how the program worked at an elementary school in Avondale here. Click here for more information.

Creating Safe Routes to School

Many children who live close enough to walk to school are driven or ride the bus because parents worry that streets are not safe. To increase the number of students walking and biking to school throughout Hamilton County, WeTHRIVE! worked with six local school districts to implement Safe Routes to School (SRTS) programs in predominantly underserved communities. Now walking and biking to school is a safe option for more than 26,000 students in 54 schools. Click here for information about getting your school involved.

Master Nutrition Volunteers move on to teach others
May 2012Since spring 2011, 88 Master Nutrition Volunteers have graduated from the WeTHRIVE! Do Right! Healthy Eating Train the Trainer course, which is coordinated by the Center for Closing the Health Gap. All graduates successfully completed a 7-week series of classes that included hands-on sessions about nutrition, food safety, meal planning, food preparation and stretching the food dollar. Master Nutrition Volunteers have led 38 church-based nutrition workshops reaching more than 800 residents. Click here for more information. See photos here.
Healthy Eating Train the Trainer Master Nutrition Volunteer Graduates

100+ Attend HBO Weight of the Nation Premiere
May 2012—On Wednesday, May 9, more than 100 people attended the WeTHRIVE!-sponsored local premiere of HBO’s The Weight of the Nation documentary series at the 20th Century Theatre in Cincinnati. Following the screening of Children in Crisis, the audience shared their reactions to the film and posed questions to a panel of community leaders. Panelists included Dr. Gary Pack (assistant superintendent, Princeton City Schools), Tim Ingram (Hamilton County health commissioner), Kiana Trabue (parent/community advocate) and Dr. Chris Boling (community pediatrician/childhood obesity expert). View photos of the event here. Join the conversation by posting a comment on our blog or on the WeTHRIVE! Facebook page. See promotional materials for the event here.

164 Attend Healthy Food Access Events
March 2012--More than 100 people attended the WeTHRIVE! Healthy Food, Healthy People Food Access Summit on Thursday, March 1, 2012. Sixty people gathered on Saturday morning, March 3, for the Food Access Community Conversation. Large and small group discussions focused on ways to increase healthy food access, particularly for Hamilton County communities that do not have full-service grocery stores. Experts presented on local food production, food distribution, healthy retail and community design and development. The presentations are available for download here. See photos of the 3/1 Summit and the 3/2 Community Conversation.

Communities pass WeTHRIVE! Wellness Resolution
Eleven communities are leading the way to making Hamilton County a healthier place to live, work and play. Addyston, Amberley Village, Avondale, Cheviot, Cleves, College HillMadisonville, North College Hill, Northside, Norwood and Wyoming have formally adopted the WeTHRIVE! Wellness Resolution. This commitment to increasing healthy eating and physical activity while decreasing exposure to second-hand smoke will make it easier for more than 97,000 residents to THRIVE! Click here to find out how your community can be a WeTHRIVE! Community, too.
WeThrive yard sign with url:

Mini-grants help create WeTHRIVE! communities
In November 2011 and February 2012, WeTHRIVE! awarded community wellness mini-grants of up to $24,000 each to 12 Hamilton County communities. Grants were awarded to: Addyston, Amberley Village, Avondale Community Council, Cheviot, Cleves, College Hill Community Council, Madisonville Community Council, North College Hill, Northside Community Council, Norwood, Roselawn Community Council and Wyoming. Click here to read about what all of our WeTHRIVE! communities are doing to make Hamilton County a healthier place to live, work and play.

Churches adopt WeTHRIVE! Wellness Resolution
Thirty-five Hamilton County churches have adopted the WeTHRIVE! Faith-based Wellness Resolution or Pledge. These organizations show a commitment to the health of their congregations as well as the community where they are located. More than one-third of these churches are located in Avondale, one of Cincinnati’s poorest neighborhoods with a population at high risk for obesity and chronic disease. Most of the other churches are located in communities with high poverty rates and/or high minority populations, which put residents at high risk for obesity and chronic disease. Learn more about the WeTHRIVE! Faith-Based Initiative here.
Rev. Alfonza Jones of Lincoln Heights Missionary Baptist Church

36 learn the art of canning vegetables
October 2011—A total of 36 people attended one of the WeTHRIVE! Canning Workshops held on two Saturdays in October at New Vision United Methodist Church in Bond Hill. Participants spent a day in the kitchen learning how to can tomatoes and took home individual canning kits. Many said they intend to put their new skills to work with veggies from their home or church garden. The free hands-on workshops were coordinated by the Center for Closing the Health Gap (a WeTHRIVE! partner) and taught by Jenny Evans from Ohio State University Extension Service. See photos here.
Woman canning tomatoes

Lincoln Heights WeTHRIVE! coalition, partners build playground
On October 29, 2011, 34 volunteers turned an empty space into a playground at Memorial Field in the Village of Lincoln Heights. The project is a result of people working together--Lincoln Heights WeTHRIVE! Consortium leaders Ruth Sanford, LaVerne Mitchell and John Key; Patrick Dunn of Playworld Midstate; Interim Village Manager Stephanie Dumas; and Josh Staggs and crew from Springdale Lowe’s. Country Fresh Produce, Wendy's (Lincoln Heights) and Speedway (Woodlawn) donated food for the volunteers. The playground includes a swing set, dome climber, slide, seesaw and tetherball. Memorial Field is located at 1100 Lindy Avenue. A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held on Saturday, November 19, followed by a march to nearby Stuffie's Market. Stuffie's is Hamilton County's first WeTHRIVE! Healthy Corner Store. See photos from the playground build here. Find out more about how Lincoln Heights THRIVES.
woman and man shake hands at playground build site

200 get moving during Physical Fitness Week
WeTHRIVE! Move Right! Physical Fitness Week was held October 10-15, 2011. Two hundred people took part in free walks and exercise classes held at churches throughout Hamilton County. Read the related blog post here. Check out our facebook page for photos of each event. See more about how faith-based organizations are helping people stay active by clicking here.
exercise class with adults

150 volunteers honored at WeTHRIVE! Recognition Event
September 2011The 3rd annual WeTHRIVE! Recognition Event for the communities of Lincoln Heights, Lockland and Woodlawn was held on September 13, 2011. The evening included an inspiring keynote presentation by Bill Grace from Common Good Works and a delicious, healthy dinner prepared by Lincoln Heights Missionary Baptist Church. Over 150 members of WeTHRIVE! Community Consortia were honored for their dedication and hard work. Read the related blog post here. See photos from the event on our facebook page and watch a video highlights here.
Attendees go through buffet line at Recognition Event

Lockland WeTHRIVE! coalition unveils new super park
September 2011Thanks to the Lockland WeTHRIVE! Community Consortia, Gardner Park is now a super park! It has new outdoor fitness equipment, a Frisbee golf course and a skate park. The Village of Lockland also improved the park’s baseball and soccer fields and the playground area. The skate park was built by approximately 150 volunteer hours from community members, youth and the Lockland Service Department. Residents of all ages from Lockland (pop. 3,700) and surrounding communities can come to Gardner Park for physical activity. The park is located at the corner of Westview Ave. and Bacon St. See photos of the super park’s kick-off here. Read more about Lockland and WeTHRIVE! here.
boy on skate board riding down ramp at new skate park

Kids get hands dirty at WeTHRIVE! cooking & gardening classes
September 2011—This past summer, 27 children and teens attended a series of four WeTHRIVE! Do Right! Teen Cooking & Garden Classes, held at Southern Baptist Church in Avondale. The kids cooked, worked in the vegetable garden, and participated in interactive sessions on portion sizes, fast food, MyPlate, food labels, sugar-sweetened beverages and more. Do Right! classes are run by The Center for Closing the Health Gap, a WeTHRIVE! partner. See more photos on our Facebook page.
teens watch chef at cooking demonstration

Physicians get onboard with WeTHRIVE!
Twenty-two physician groups have joined the WeTHRIVE! Hamilton County Obesity Learning Collaborative. Developed by WeTHRIVE! partner Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, this program helps pediatricians implement proven strategies for obesity screening, assessment and management. So far, the Collaborative has the potential to reach more than 75,000 Hamilton County children yearly. Find more information and a list of participating physician groups here.

300 attend WeTHRIVE! Community Event promoting healthy food access for all.
Growing Healthy Kids & Families: Come Taste & See, held on June 25, 2011, was a huge success. We signed 258 people up to join the movement! Twenty-five residents showed their support of WeTHRIVE! by volunteering their time and hard work to make this event happen. See photos and read more about the event on our blog. Watch a video here.
young girl at garden

Community gardens grow access to healthy food.
September 2012Since 2009, WeTHRIVE! has helped build 35 community, church and school gardens in Hamilton County. The gardens are located in 18 communities, reaching more than 169,000 residents, of whom 18.6% live below the poverty level. Residents get free space to grow their own fruits and vegetables and extra harvest is donated to those in need. Training for 20 church gardens was provided by Ohio State University Extension. See WeTHRIVE! gardens up close here. Read more about our community gardens here.
WeTHRIVE! garden sign at St. Simon Cyrene Episcopal Church with garden in background

Healthy corner stores bring fresh produce to food deserts.
September 2012To increase the availability of healthy foods in underserved communities, WeTHRIVE! encourages neighborhood corner store owners to offer fresh produce for sale. Five corner stores in Avondale, Lincoln Heights and Lockland began selling fresh produce in communities without a supermarket. One has since moved from Lincoln Heights to Mt. Healthy. See a video clip here and find more information here.

11 school districts are early adopters of nutrition.
WeTHRIVE! and the Nutrition Council helped 11 school districts adopt nutrition guidelines for food and beverages sold in vending machines, a la carte lines and school stores, making it easier for 61,000 students in Hamilton County to make the healthy choice when they are at school. These districts are: Cincinnati, Deer Park, Finneytown, Lockland, Loveland, Madeira, Princeton, Reading, Sycamore, Southwest and Three Rivers. All Ohio school districts were required to adopt the new standards by July 2011. Click here for more information about WeTHRIVE! in Schools!
basket of fresh apples, oranges and pears

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August 7, 2014