The Englewood Health Navigators is an initiative of the Englewood Quality of Life Plan’s Health & Wellness Task Force. The pilot of the initiative is funded by Impact Englewood, a McCormick Foundation Fund and managed by Imagine Englewood If. The Englewood Health Navigators used knowledge sharing, training and access to real-time resources to encourage peer learning as a unique way of supporting our wellness. This committed group served as a powerful bridge between healthcare institutions, community initiatives and residents. They went out into the community to connect residents to a variety of health resources, including screening for chronic illness and sexually transmitted infections, and mental health resources, navigators also connect residents to opportunities for increased nutrition and physical fitness leveraging local assets.
Our efforts and reports led to the creation of the H.E.R.O Program. Partnered with the Englewood Health & Wellness Task Force, the OCEAN-HP Health Education, Resources and Opportunity (H.E.R.O) Program aims to affect change. In our effort to close the 30-year life expectancy gap in the city of Chicago, where Englewood residents are expected to live to only 60 years old, the H.E.R.O. Program empowers and trains residents to become health educators and spread knowledge and resources to those who need it in the community.