In 2015 the CYC was awarded funding from the Rhode Island Department of Health to establish and grow a Health Equity Zone in the West End and South Side neighborhoods of Providence. The premise of the department’s HEZ investment is to address the social and environmental determinants of health through a public health model and a place based approach. Given the existing work of community priority setting and identification of evidence-based programs to improve child wellbeing in these neighborhoods, the creation of a Health Equity Zone was a natural next step for the CYC. The CYC’s HEZ initiative focuses on improving outcomes of maternal and child health particularly for families with children birth to eight years of age. This is be accomplished with a tiered approach that includes

  • scaling evidence-based interventions identified by the HEZ communities,
  • supporting clinical interventions that address priority outcomes for these neighborhoods,
  • changing the context in these communities to ensure evidence-based approaches become the norm and,
  • addressing the social and environmental determinants of health to improve conditions for all children and their families.

Currently in year 2 of implementation, the West End and South Side HEZ has seen great resident engagement, exciting programmatic results and innovative problem-solving to improve child wellbeing in these neighborhoods. Stay tuned for compelling stories from some of the key champions of the CYC’s Health Equity Zone.

"This group shows how much more we can accomplish together than any of us could do alone."

—Chace Baptista, South Side/West End Community Partnership Table member