30th-Anniversary-Bunny-Friend-Neighborhood-steps-into-shape-with-Tulane-PRC-support

30th Anniversary: Bunny Friend Neighborhood steps into shape with Tulane PRC support

The Prevention Research Centers (PRCs) Program, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is celebrating its 30th Anniversary in 2016. Throughout the year, the Tulane PRC will share stories about its community-based work and partnerships. Click here for more about the 30th Anniversary.

The Bunny Friend Neighborhood Association is a group of residents in New Orleans' Upper Ninth Ward that are committed to the well-being of the community. Tulane Prevention Research Center (PRC) has worked with the neighborhood association in several different capacities, including wellness programs, health fairs and garden building.

For instance, the Tulane PRC teamed up with the AARP Soul Stepper initiative to create a walking group in the Bunny Friend Neighborhood. Some of the walking group members have since participated in local events like the Christmas in the Oaks Walk/Run and the Susan G Komen Cancer Walk/Run.

"(The walking group) was well received by the residents. It caused members to be more health conscious of walking as a form of exercise. This resulted in weight loss for some, increased flexibility in joints, and increased breathing for those suffering with asthma and allergies," neighborhood leader Ruby Melton said.

Each year, the Bunny Friend Neighborhood Association hosts a health fair for local residents. Tulane PRC has been a strong support system for the association on this endeavor, as well.

"Each year (Tulane PRC) helps in getting and organizing information, vendors, and medical personnel for our annual health fair and each year more people are attending in order to seek information and services," Melton said.

As access to fresh fruits and vegetables has been a concern for neighborhood residents, Tulane PRC helped to construct a citrus garden within walking distance of the Bunny Friend Park. Additionally, Tulane PRC and Bunny Friend collaborated on the Makin' Groceries project, a comparative study of a neighborhood with a grocery store and a neighborhood without a grocery store.

The partnership between Tulane PRC and the Bunny Friend Neighborhood Association has grown the neighborhood's capacity and interest in wellness, health education, and nutrition and will continue to grow in the future.

To learn more about the Bunny Friend Neighborhood Association, visit their Facebook page.

By Kevin Crooks and Enrico Cabredo, Tulane PRC Graduate Student Assistants

Topics:   physical activity , walking , sidewalks , built environment , community advisory board , community health , PRCs 30th Anniversary

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