COMMUNITY HEALTH: Healthfirst improves health by increasing access to health services and teaching self-care

The Challenge: Claremont Village is a neighborhood in the South Bronx, New York. Life expectancy at birth for Claremont residents is five years less than the New York City (NYC) average and twelve years less than the best performing community district. Approximately one-third (35%) of Claremont residents do not graduate high school, and families enter homeless shelters at a rate that is three times the NYC average. (Source) Community members have suffered from decades of disinvestment.

Our Goal: To improve health among community members in Claremont Village by partnering with other neighborhood organizations to increase city investment, neighborhood activities, and health services.

The Healthfirst Solution: Healthfirst and BronxCare anchored the Claremont Healthy Village Initiative, a coalition founded in 2012 to promote health and reduce inequity through community-driven activities. The partners collaborated to coordinate walking clubs, dance classes, police-community basketball games, built environment changes, health screenings, and more. We evaluated the program through interviews with 31 stakeholders and 94 community members, and surveys of 162 community members.

Population Health Improvements: 

  • $200,000 city investment in community center renovations and capital improvements
  • 62% of community members reported increased access to health services
  • 54% reported more opportunities for healthy eating
  • 53% reported increased availability of youth activities

Takeaway: Claremont Healthy Village Initiative shows community-led population health investments can drive measurable improvements in access and engagement with healthcare and health-related programs and services.