LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (News release) — The City of Little Rock has been selected by Reinvestment Fund and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to take part in the new Invest Health initiative. Invest Health is aimed at transforming how leaders from mid-size American cities work together to help low-income communities thrive, with specific attention to community features that drive health such as access to safe and affordable housing, places to play and exercise, and quality jobs.
Little Rock was selected from more than 180 teams from 170 communities that applied to the initiative. Cities with populations between 50,000 and 400,000 were asked to form five-member teams, including representatives from the public sector, community development, and an anchor institution, preferably academic or health-related.
The City of Little Rock team comprises representatives from the City of Little Rock, Arkansas Center for Health Improvement, the Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, Better Community Development and Southern Bancorp, Inc. The team will seek to address health outcome disparities related to domestic violence and obesity, and the factors leading to health disparities, such as violent crime and housing, by targeting efforts in geographic locations within Little Rock that show the most deviation from the broader population.