Beyond the Murals: Visual Story Sharing and Partner Collaboration
Building Healthy Communities
January 22, 2021
Through its Building Healthy Communities priority area, NYSHealth has supported neighborhood-level approaches to improve access to healthy, affordable food and to activate spaces to encourage more physical activity.
Recognizing that sustainable resident engagement is vital to community health, NYSHealth is supporting its Building Healthy Communities grantees to ensure that the residents of these neighborhoods have the leadership skills, resources, and other tools needed to advocate for community health. With this support, grantees can help remove barriers to resident participation and ensure the long-term sustainability of the overall work in these communities. In 2021, NYSHealth awarded the National Falls National Heritage Area (NFNHA) a grant to increase community engagement with programming that improves the mental and physical health of residents in Niagara Falls.
Under this grant, NFNHA will sustain and build additional partnerships within the Highland Avenue community to strengthen long-term outdoor wellness programming. It will continue to connect residents to the Heritage Arts Mural Project, Heritage Walking Trail, Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center, Community Health Center of Niagara, and the newly renovated Niagara Gorge Trail. It will expand community involvement in projects and events such as the Highland Parade, the African American Men’s Wellness Walk, Unity Day, and Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center Community Days. NFNHA will also develop and implement new programming to engage residents, such as a photography project that will involve visual story-sharing and provide an opportunity for residents to be represented visually in their community.