Developed by the Seattle Housing Authority, Cultivating Communities is a neighborhood gardening program for low-income communities in Seattle, Washington. The program has provided lead-free gardening plots, increased availability of healthy food, and promoted social connections and trust between community members.
In 2004, the voters of Olympia, Washington approved a 3% utility tax to improve their parks, sidewalks, and open space. With the new revenue, the city has purchased land for two neighborhood parks and sidewalk improvements are well underway.
The City of Los Angeles passed its Child Nutrition Policy in 2005 requiring recreation centers and other youth-serving city departments and programs to offer more nutritious meals and snacks. With a unanimous vote in favor of the Child Nutrition Policy, LA City Council demonstrated its intention to make fresh fruits and vegetables more accessible while curtailing youth access to sugary sodas and salty, high-fat snacks.
In 2004, the Food Trust in Philadelphia, PA, in partnership with The Reinvestment Fund and the Greater Philadelphia Urban Affairs Coalition, identified a strong need for government investment to finance supermarkets, grocery stores, and other healthy food retailers in underserved communities. This led to the first statewide fresh food financing initiative.
Believed to be the first ordinance of its kind, Chicago's legislation to limit restrictive land-use covenants prevents supermarkets and drugstores from restricting future use of vacated property in the event of store closures. This ordinance holds great promise to prevent neighborhood blight and promote residents' continued access to fresh, healthy food retailers.
In 1990, the Norfolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority (NRHA) began to redevelop Diggs Town, a large low-income public housing project in Norfolk, Virginia. The Diggs Town Public Housing Redevelopment Project improved public safety, fostered a sense of pride in common spaces, and integrated social services into the community.
In the Pico Union/MacArthur Park area of Los Angeles-home to a diverse Latino population-the Los Angeles Economic Development Zone provides services to under-employed and unemployed residents to help them become licensed to prepare, handle, and sell food products that are healthy and reflect the culture of local community.
In the rural town of Woodburn, Oregon with a more than 50% Latino population, the farmworkers union has developed a strong organizing and advocacy history on labor and housing issues. Now, through its 5,700+ members, the farmworkers, spouses, and children are also addressing healthy food access and physical activity to help local residents eat better and move more.