Restoration is at the forefront of efforts to address health disparities in Brooklyn and empowering communities to improve access to healthy foods, increase physical activity, and abstain from high-risk behavior.
Center for Healthy Neighborhoods (CHN) promotes healthy eating and lifestyles in Central Brooklyn. Through multiple initiatives supported by public and private institutions, we are able to connect thousands of residents to free exercise classes and events, access to nutritious food, and equity in the distribution of foods to underserved populations.
Central Brooklyn is ranked sixth nationally for food hardship. With rates of obesity, heart disease and diabetes exceeding state and city averages (Read Community Health Profiles ), it is no coincidence that communities of color face significant health challenges. CHN is leading a number of initiatives to address these issues.
Center for Healthy Neighborhoods has partnered with several local farmers’ markets to increase access to fresh local produce and promote healthy food options in Central Brooklyn. Click here for more info.
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- FRESH SERIES: check out for locations for affordable/free, fresh and locally grown produce, as well as tips and resources on how to prepare and eat healthy.
For more information on improving or starting your healthy lifestyle, please contact:
firstname.lastname@example.org or call (718) 636-5591
Food Access & Equity
Central Brooklyn Food Hub Feasibility Study Summary (May 2021)
Commissioned by New York State's Department of Agriculture and Markets, Restoration completed a feasibility study for the Central Brooklyn Food Hub presenting a set of recommendations for a community-owned food system. Following a "hub-and-spoke" model, the vision for the Central Brooklyn Food Hub includes a central processing, aggregation, and distribution facility connected to a network that includes community-owned retail, a commercial kitchen and a culinary incubator, dedicated technical assistance to Brooklyn-based and NYS farmers, and an community-led advisory committee leading the decision making.
A Guide to Growing Good Food Jobs in New York City (October 2018)
Community Development Corporations (CDCs) and Settlement Houses (SHs) strive to create strong, healthy communities that make it easier for their residents to find healthy affordable food and good jobs. Good food jobs pay a decent wage; offer benefits, safe working conditions and pathways for career advancement; and make healthy affordable food more available in low-income communities. To advance work on achieving these goals, the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute at the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy, Local Initiatives Support Corporation New York City (LISC NYC), United Neighborhood Houses (UNH), and the Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation (Restoration) partnered to identify promising models for integrating workforce development and healthy food access.
Working Together to Improve Community-Level Health: The Evolution of the New York City Food & Fitness Partnership (September 2018)
The New York City Food & Fitness Partnership case study discusses how the scope and abundance of diverse community stakeholders can create difficulties when addressing and conducting work in a large city landscape.
Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation’s Farm to Early Care Program: A Foundation for a Healthier, Stronger Central Brooklyn Families and Communities (August 2018)
Can community-rooted organizations build the power to promote health, equity and community development? In this policy brief, staff from the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation (Restoration) and the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute describe one effort to mobilize community assets to develop a comprehensive and integrated approach to supporting well-being, prosperity, increased community power and pathways out of poverty.
Creating Integrated Strategies for Increasing Access to Healthy Affordable Food in Urban Communities: A Case Study of Intersecting Food Initiatives (June 2017)
In New York and other cities, substantial evidence documents that community food environments interact with inequitable allocation of power, wealth, and services to shape the distribution of diet related diseases and food insecurity. This case study shows how Restoration has lunched multiple coordinated food initiatives in order to reduce the burden of food-related health problems.
Good Food, Great Kids: Making Practice and Policy Work for Farm to Early Childcare & Education (2016)
Children receive an estimated 50%-70% of their nutrients in early care facilities, including day care and Head Start, and Early Head Start programs. Unfortunately, not all of the food served in these facilities has the nutritional value needed for growing bodies. In impoverished communities, gaining access to healthy foods is even more difficult. This report details how Restoration’s Center for Healthy Neighborhoods began with 1 Head Start site and the methods it used to expand across central Brooklyn.
Since 2015, Restoration has led the NYC Better Bike Share Partnership alongside partners at Citi Bike and Lyft, NYC Department of Transportation, NYC Department of Healthy and Mental Hygiene, and other community-based organizations and cycling advocates. This report, a follow-up to the 2017 report Bringing Equitable Bike Share to Bed-Stuy, provides a progress update on the equity-driven efforts of the Partnership between 2017 and 2020, including the development of a blueprint of equity principles and policy goals informing the Partnerships' collective efforts and the work to increase affordable access to bike share with the creation of the Reduced Fare Bike Share program.
Restoration leads the Better Bike Share Partnership with partners including Citi Bike operator Motivate, the NYC Department of Transportation, the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, two local hospitals, and many more. What began as a pilot has now flourished into a citywide program. Our partnership has expanded with the goal of replicating our success across communities of color across New York City.
Center for Healthy Neighborhoods has partnered with Citi Bike and other community organizations to launch webinars to educate and raise awareness of our bike share work, and help other organizations replicate our model. Whether starting or expanding bike share programming, partner organizations like Citi Bike, Interfaith Medical Center, and NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene have shared best practices and information about the latest actions and policy efforts in bike share equity.
View the recordings of webinars below.
Building Subsidized Bike Share to Improve Community Health
- Part 1 -February 13th, 2018 - Description:
Bike share programming can be used as a workforce development tool to empower employees and clients to improve their health through increased physical activity and mobility. This webinar will present a case study of Brooklyn-based Interfaith Medical Center's work as a model for replication by healthcare providers, nonprofits, and employers.
Building Subsidized Bike Share to Improve Community Health
– Part 2 -Feb 27th, 2018 - Description:
This webinar spotlights two unique organizations- CORE, which services homeless and re-entry populations, as well as Per Scholas, which is a citywide workforce development organization- and describes how they used bike share to support their employees and customers.
Promoting Bike Share Through Ride Leadership and Community Events
March 27, 2018
Learn how a community may use weekly bike rides and community events as a means of promoting a culture of biking. This webinar will demonstrate how communities such as Bedford-Stuyvesant and Harlem have used these vehicles to better engage residents and promote the health and wellness of residents.
Promoting Bike Share through Youth Engagement
April 24, 2018 - 2pm
This webinar explores a variety of efforts in NYC being used to engage youth as early adopters of Citi Bike. Strategies include ways to better connect youth to biking as a mode of transportation to school, work and recreation with examples including NYC pilots such as Citi Bike to School and Citi Bike for Youth.
Check out these webinars
Biking Your Way to a Bigger Bank Account
May 22, 2018 - 2pm
Learn how bike share can be used by both organizations and individuals as a valuable tool to increase savings. This webinar addresses how various membership options can support your clients, staff, and broader community. Hear from financial counseling professionals on how to translate transportation savings into other areas of one’s financial plan. The session also addresses how bike share can be used as an entry point for the unbanked, encouraging them to open a bank account and address credit issues impeding their financial health.
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In May 2020, the Urban Design Forum and Van Alen Institute offered to advise members of the Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development, a coalition of community organizations across New York City, on their reopening strategies. Five organizations joined the initiative: 82nd Street Partnership in Jackson Heights, Queens; Bed-Stuy Gateway BID and Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn; Community League of the Heights in Washington Heights, Manhattan; and the Northwest Bronx Community & Clergy Coalition in Kingsbridge, Bronx.
Throughout the summer, these organizations collaborated with coalitions of architects, engineers, lawyers, and planners from Van Alen and Urban Design Forum’s collective network. The outcomes are a set of design recommendations and prototypes addressing immediate needs for COVID-19 awareness campaigns, open air dining, and outdoor education and wellness activities.
Created by the Restoration working group, these pamphlets aim to share information about reopening guidelines in a concise and user-friendly style. They outline recommendations:
To read more about the Neighborhoods Now, click here.