Kellogg Foundation invests in Detroit

W.K. KelloggWe recently wrote about W.K. Kellogg’s early bicycling advocacy efforts including his lifetime membership in the League of American Wheelmen.

Those efforts have continued through the Kellogg Foundation which has invested in trails throughout Michigan.

Here’s more good news as of last Monday.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation announced today it will invest $32,450,000 over the span of three years in community-driven efforts and national projects that are working to increase access to healthy food and physical activity for vulnerable children and their families.

Food & Community encourages community leaders and organizations to work together to address four priorities:

  • Transforming school food systems
  • Improving community food environments
  • Promoting active living and routine physical activity
  • Sustaining and expanding the growing national movement for healthful food and active living

Nine communities that were part of the Kellogg Foundation’s Food & Fitness Initiative, which began in 2007, are receiving initial funding almost $11 million over the next three years from Food & Community. The following communities have spent more than two years planning and piloting local approaches to create healthier communities: : Boston; Holyoke,MA; New York City; Philadelphia; Northeast Iowa; Detroit; the Tohono O’odham Nation in Southern Arizona; Seattle/King County; and Oakland.

As with all the communities listed, Detroit collaboratively developed its local plan over the past couple years. And within the active living section of the plan, four prioritized objectives were identified:

  • Working with other coalitions to pass Complete Streets policies at the city, county, and state levels
  • Encouraging expansion of the Safe Routes to School program
  • Advocating for recreation centers and parks near each Detroit resident, including implementing the Detroit Recreation Department’s Strategic Master Plan.
  • Supporting efforts to transform vacant lots, abandoned railways, and public right-of-ways into more than 50 miles of trails and greenways.

In order to address those priorities, Detroit will receive $400,000 annually for three years from the Kellogg Foundation.

One key is this funding targets policy and systems change. Kellogg wants to see their investment last beyond the three years.

Meeting the four objectives would certainly help transform active living in Detroit.

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