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Seed Grants


Handiwork can be magical for sparking creativity and innovation. Here’s a chance to use your hands for good by joining the South East Chicago Commission (SECC) for a Project Work Day in August and/or September.  SECC is one of six organizations that received a 2019 Health Chicago 2.0 Community Seed Grant to support locally-driven activities and solutions aimed at improving the built environment to promote community walkability in connection to public transit.  Each of the winning projects are focused on neighborhood beautification and environmental improvement near select CTA stops.

The funding was awarded by the Chicago Dept. of Public Health, PHIMC (Public Health Institute of Metropolitan Chicago) in collaboration with Elevated Chicago, whose mission is to use equitable Transit Oriented Development (eTOD) to achieve racial equity in Chicago’s built environment in order to improve the health, climate resilience and cultural vitality of people of color living and working near transit.

“By focusing funding around these CTA stations, the Seed Grants will help build community capacity to implement built environment improvements that leverage resources for lasting impact and can be replicated throughout the city,” said Karen A. Reitan, PHIMC Executive Director.

Successful applicants proposed or were guided by community-driven efforts to address barriers to walkability within the half mile radius of selected CTA stops. Their projects address the experiences of community members who are at higher risk of experiencing displacement due to gentrification or disinvestment.

“CDPH has a keen understanding of the connections between public health and our built environment, particularly in communities of color. We think these grants will make the walk between CTA stations and other community assets more interesting and safe for residents. Ultimately, these grants are addressing inequities deeply rooted in our City, and elevating health indicators for residents by promoting active lifestyles and empowered communities,” said Roberto Requejo, Elevated Chicago Program Director.

A total of $150,000 in Seed funding has been awarded for 2019. See the full list of grantees and project summaries below:


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