2016 grants awarded

In 2016, grants were awarded to 58 organizations in Minnesota and western Wisconsin to support activities that promote social connections and increased in healthy behavior. Grants ranged from $750 to $10,000. The 2016 Neighborhood Health Connection activities are:

City Organization Activity Summary
Annandale Annandale Youth First, Inc. Participants will take part in weekly free yoga classes at the Corinna Township Hall or on Annandale Public Beach. The classes are for anyone who wishes to participate. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Most participants have been adults, ages 18 - 75.
Anoka Stepping Stone Emergency Housing Eating, Reading, Playing...Living is a about educating and encouraging residents of Stepping Stone who are experiencing homelessness to live an overall healthy lifestyle. The program will take place at Stepping Stone and will consist of a monthly book club, weekly workout/exercise classes, and monthly healthy eating group meetings, which will include cooking classes, food philosophy development and food education.
Belle Plaine The Lutheran Home: Boessling Village Apartments Residents living in low income senior housing will receive raised garden beds and gardening supplies and meet once a month to discuss healthy eating and healthy living.
Buffalo Buffalo Presbyterian Church Gardeners of all ages will participate in six group events that will teach gardening techniques and promote healthy food choices at the Buffalo Presbyterian Church Community Garden. One event will take place at a local greenhouse and the remaining five will be at the church.
Buffalo Central Minnesota Mental Health Center Clients with mental illness who attend our Community Support Program will be educated on healthy food, provided healthy snacks at activities and be able to have a healthy meal one time per week. Our clients will also be able to participate in weekly activities like bowling, swimming, yoga, interactive games, art studio, bingo and support groups.
Buffalo Montrose Elementary School Students and their families will meet at Montrose Elementary to participate in a variety of physical activities and engage with other families in the community.
Cambridge City of Cambridge Cambridge city residents will be invited to attend a free outdoor yoga classes at Heritage Greens Park.
Cambridge GracePointe Crossing Residents of a senior living community will be participating in "Let's Grow Together"—a gardening, socializing and healthy eating project.
Cambridge Industries, Incorporated Adults with disabilities in a day program designed to empower participants to discover and develop their individual abilities will be given the opportunity to participate in a variety of health- and nutrition-based classes and activities under the guidance of a professional wellness coach.
Cambridge Isanti County Commission on Aging Members of the senior population in the greater Cambridge area of Isanti County will participate in an hour of moderately-paced walking in the Cambridge mall twice weekly. Based on the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans of two-and-a-half hours of moderate intensity activity weekly, an additional half-hour of walking will be assigned for walkers to complete independently.
Cambridge Isanti County Historical Society 30 participants will attend cooking workshops, "Cooking Matters," at the Isanti County Historical Society's commercial kitchen. The workshop teaches fun and interesting (spicy) ways to prepare food, present food, and gain healthy eating values. Participants will receive their own spice kit after successful completion of the Cooking Matters series.
Cambridge Isanti County Master Gardener Families with care for the Junior Master Gardener plot in the Cambridge Community Garden, visit local farms and attend gardening classes together.
Chaska Eastern Carver County School- Community Education Residents of Riverview Terrace and Auburn Manor Senior Center will participate in gardening and food preparation experiences to support healthy eating. Through the program, residents will increase social connections to support a healthy lifestyle.
Chaska Launch Ministry Homeless and struggling young adults will eat a free, healthy meal before attending a recovery group.
Columbia Heights Aeon Low-income, senior residents at Aeon's apartment building in Columbia Heights will participate in weekly yoga and gardening classes. All activities will take place in community spaces at their apartment building.
Ellsworth Ellsworth Public Library Adults within the Ellsworth Public Library service area will be given pedometers and will gather for a weekly walk and two monthly potlucks featuring presentations on health-related topics.
Faribault Bethel Ridge Church Church members and community residents will work together on monthly projects that benefit those in need within the Faribault community, such as textile crafting, lawn care and snow removal. Information about physical activities in the community, health snacks and healthy recipes will be provided to participants.
Faribault Faribault Diversity Coalition Refugees and immigrants will have regular walks with downtown business owners to promote social connectedness, good health, and relationship building. While on their walks, participants will engage in conversations and food tasting. They will learn about healthy food options and purchase healthy foods for their families. Families will walk downtown and to the Fareway Grocery store.
Faribault Ruth's House of Hope, Inc. Residents of the Ruth's House Transitional Shelter will participate in healthy cooking classes, a walking group, and mindfulness/meditation programs.
Forest Lake Forest Lake Area Schools Community Education This walking club that will allow people to increase their physical activity as well as to have an opportunity to socialize with others. Adults and active seniors in the community will be organized into small groups based on length of time they want to walk and speed preferred. Walks will take place on the Hardwood Creek Trail or through neighborhoods in Forest Lake.
Fridley Friends Of Fridley Senior Program Ten seniors from the community center and their family members will be participate in weekly instructor-led exercise and education classes focused on cardiovascular/stroke risk reduction. Our goal is for three generations to participate from each family. The program will be held at the Fridley Senior Center and Unity Hospital and take place for six weeks.
Fridley Lee Carlson Center for Mental Health & Well- Being/Bridgeview Adults living with severe and persistent mental illness will learn about all aspects of healthy living through participating in yoga sessions and dance classes, offsite healthy cooking classes and onsite education from Penny George on healthy living.
Hastings City of Hastings City of Hastings employees in our Healthy Actions Program will be provided with Fit Bits for exercise tracking. Employees will use the Fit Bits to track the exercise they do together at the indoor high school track and outdoor parks and trails, and on their own between meetings. Employees will use the information from the trackers to share their progress with one another and encourage each other to engage in healthy activity.
Hopkins ICA Food Shelf (on behalf of the Blake Road Corridor Collaborative) Neighborhood residents and community members will have the opportunity to join cooking gatherings, swimming lessons, bike club outings, and gardening activities in Hopkins.
Howard Lake The Lodge of Howard Lake Community Asset Foundation Residents of an assisted living facility will participate in gardening activities and healthy cooking, arts, and yoga classes, all taught by experts in our local community.
Hudson River Falls School District Parents of children grades Pre-K through 8th grade will participate in 6 structured sessions full of activity, discussion, and hands-on activities designed to encourage creative thinking and practical problem-solving regarding child physical activity and nutrition.
Isanti Cambridge Isanti Early Childhood Program The Early Childhood staff will be making healthy freezer meals and exercising together for 6 weeks, with the help of local wellness coaches. We will be utilizing the local high school Home EC room and a local fitness facility to complete our activities.
Lino Lakes YMCA in Lino Lakes Participants will gather in small groups at community locations for 12 weekly sessions in which a YMCA Lifestyle Coach will facilitate discussion, lead weekly goal-setting, and present relevant information on a variety of wellness topics focused on increasing healthy behaviors and cultivating social connections.
Maplewood ISD 622 community Education Adult students who are learning English and represent many different cultures will learn from other students about the foods grown in the community garden onsite, as well as how to cook some healthy cross-cultural foods. Nutrition information and recipes will be included.
Minneapolis CommonBond Communities Residents of the Seward Tower East and West properties will walk together twice weekly throughout their neighborhood. The resident population is diverse and the activity will provide an opportunity to strengthen cross-cultural relationships and support healthy exercise. This is an easy, low cost activity, staffed by CommonBond, and will include water bottles, healthy snacks and walking shoes when needed.
Minneapolis Loaves and Fishes Low-income adults and seniors will take ownership of our vegetable garden at Easter Lutheran Church in Eagan. Participants will plant, harvest, and/or tend the garden once a week. After each gardening session, participants will have the opportunity to join Loaves and Fishes staff in cooking a healthy meal for themselves and for our guests.
Minneapolis Seward Montessori Bike To School Program Over the next nine months, members of our school community will participate in organized bicycle rides/events. Events and rides will be logged and participants recognized and rewarded.
Minneapolis St. Mary's Health Clinics Parents of students attending Risen Christ School in South Minneapolis, most of them Latinos, will enroll in the E3 Padres Network (Eat, Exercise, Educate!) and meet regularly at school. The group will practice healthy habits through a walking group, a healthy cooking and nutrition program, and Zumba classes.
Minneapolis The Link Formerly homeless youth living in a permanent supportive housing apartment complex in North Minneapolis will have the opportunity to attend a weekly exercise group where they will learn about wellness and healthy eating.
Montrose Buffalo High School Our staff will be participating in a six session "book read" using the book Daring Greatly by Brene Brown to explore resiliency skills, and healthy physical activity and eating habits. Staff are hoping to role model these skills for the students at our school.
New Brighton Opportunity Neighborhood Residents living in two low-income housing complexes will participate in six healthy community dinners and nutrition education sessions provided by the U of M's Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program.
New Ulm Community And Seniors Together Residents of New Ulm, as well as Brown County, will be invited to participate in a free weekly chair exercise class at the Senior Center.
New Ulm Kids Connection School-aged children and their adult family members will learn about gardening and eating healthy produce while getting exercise.
New Ulm Pro Kinship for Kids Pro Kinship for Kids families in Brown County, Minnesota will learn about healthy eating through food science days and cooking classes. Participating families will also be physically active via participation in various events and outings around the community such as creative exercise days and visits to gyms, parks, and pools.
New Ulm VOA Adult Day Services Attendees of Adult Day Service in New Ulm and their families will participate in a wellness program. Participants will plant and care for two raised gardens. Produce from the garden will be used at the ADS site and sent home with participants. Physical therapists will also offer a monthly class where participants can exercise with new weights and therapeutic bands.
North Branch Family Pathways Clients of a battered women and children's shelter in Cambridge, MN will be involved in art activities, walking with pedometers and weekly healthy cooking classes.
Northfield Friends of Way Park Members of the Northfield community will be invited to do yoga outside in Way Park on the eight consecutive Saturday mornings in August and September.
Northfield Northfield Healthy Community Initiative Community members living in the neighborhood near Greenvale Park Elementary School will participate in fun evening physical activity classes and/or workshops on how to prepare healthy family meals on a limited budget.
Northfield Northfield Senior Citizen's Inc. People with early stage dementia and their care partner will engage with one another through social, interactive activities at "The Memory Café" in the Sunshine Café at the Northfield Senior Center.
Owatonna Centro Campesino Latino Youth and their families will create a community garden at Centro Campesino. The vegetables that we grow together will be used to make salsa, can vegetables, and teach healthy ways to prepare vegetables.
River Falls River Falls Community Arts Base Adults of all ages will hike together on different trails in the River Falls community and gather objects (including natural and "thrown away" items) to assemble into "found art" under the guidance of two artists/leaders.
River Falls St Croix Valley NAMI Participants from St Croix and Pierce County who are living with mental illness will meet monthly (series of six events) at different locations to do physical activities and learn healthy eating habits in the community.
River Falls St. Croix Valley Habitat for Humanity Residents of the Eco Village will learn about healthy eating and physical activity by planning and growing community vegetable gardens.
River Falls Turningpoint for Victims of Domestic and Sexual Violence Women ages 18-80 who are victims/survivors of domestic violence, sexual violence, or dating violence will participate in a health and wellness program. The wellness series includes: Planting a Garden; Journeys to Peace: Leadership with Horses; Healthy Eating on a Budget; Financial Wellness; Walk to Empower; Art Empowerment; Make-Ahead Healthy Meals; Laughter Yoga and Mindfulness; Feeling Beautiful; and Nature Therapy on the Kinni.
Rockford RiverWorks Community Development Through an application process, 10 families will be chosen for participation in FamWorks Club, a six-session wellness program. Four sessions will be focused on healthy eating and will include activities such as preparing healthy meals together and learning how to freeze, store, and can Minnesota fruits and vegetables. Two sessions will involve outdoor physical activities.
Saint Paul Keystone Community Services Community seniors will participate in The Next Steps to Better Nutrition Program's six week module which teaches participants how they can afford, purchase and cook nutritious foods. The program will be facilitated by our Senior Fitness Coordinator at our two community center locations.
Saint Paul Model Cities of St. Paul, Inc. Using local walking trails and parks near Saint Paul's Frogtown and Summit University neighborhoods, participants in Model Cities' community-based programs will participate in weekly walk/run activities that promote healthy eating, physical activity and social connections. Participants who are healthy and motivated enough to accomplish a more intensive physical activity goal will have the opportunity to participate in a 5K event.
Saint Paul Guild Incorporated Members of Guild Incorporated's Community Support Program in West Saint Paul will meet over a six week period to shop for fresh produce at a farmer's market and prepare healthy meals together.
Shakopee Scott County Health and Human Services (Adult Mental Health) Adults involved with Scott County's drop-in center (and who are living with major mental and physical health concerns) will be participating in a "Health Challenge" that will involve obtaining an initial health screening and then signing on for team activities. Participants will engage throughout the summer in a variety of activities that encourage movement and connecting with others while having fun!
Shakopee Scott County Public Health Nutrition Educators and chefs will work with community members in a teaching kitchen to demonstrate healthy food preparation. The kitchen will be located at a community site with a variety of partners. NHC funds will supplement Scott County's Statewide Health Improvement Program activities by purchasing participant incentives and healthy, culturally appropriate foods from local vendors to be used during classes.
Shakopee St. Gertrude's Health & Rehabilitation Center Seniors 50 years of age and older will participate in a twice-weekly Walk & Stretch program that will include yoga stretch exercises, walking, and discussion on safe ways to move. The exercise class will be based at St. Gertrude's Health & Rehabilitation Center but participants will walk around the entire St. Francis Campus. Fitbits will be offered to anyone participating for all three weeks.
Sleepy Eye VOA - Countryside Retirement Community Seniors in our Sleepy Eye Living Campus in Sleepy Eye, Minnesota will meet twice-weekly for a Senior Strength exercise program with an experienced leader.
Winthrop Good Samaritan Society- Winthrop Residents of the nursing home and assisted living facility will be using exercise balls and drum sticks for "Drums Alive." Glasses for refreshments will be provided along with weekly classes of "Moving Meditation."