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Live Healthy Miami Gardens

Live Healthy Miami Gardens

Get Moving Miami Gardens is a collaborative project focused on creating and activating a walking and biking route from City Hall along NW 187th Street. By hosting activities and installing features like painted crosswalks, pop-up parks, and signage, we’re redefining public space to improve safety, access, mobility, and physical activity in Miami Gardens.

Be a Part of the Movement!

Share your thoughts! This project will only be successful with your insight and feedback. We hope you’ll also stay in touch. Subscribe to our mailing list, and follow us on social media to stay up to date on project activities, and learn about opportunities to connect with other residents and stay physically active.

Bonus: Postcards were sent in the mail to residents within the immediate project area. If you received a postcard and you’re one of the first 50 people to complete the survey, you’ll receive a free digital pedometer to count your steps!

Increasing Access, Mobility, and Safety

This project aims to increase opportunities for physical activity in Miami Gardens by improving the walking and biking experience between key destinations. We’re collaborating with multiple partner groups and community members to create an activity-friendly route from City Hall along NW 187th Street. The project will result in temporary physical improvements to streets, sidewalks, parks, and transit stops (features like pop-up parks, signage, painted crosswalks, art, etc.) that will allow community members to engage with potential improvements, provide feedback, and identify effective permanent changes to be made in the future. The Get Moving project will help accelerate long-term changes to mobility in Miami Gardens, increasing safety, access, and physical activity. 

This project will highlight to the community that access to everyday destinations can be easily traveled to by active transportation (walking and biking), which can, in turn, improve their physical and mental health. The destinations will be focused in the area of zip code 33056, which was identified as an area of higher need because of the increased number of chronic diseases and the higher reliance on public transportation. The everyday destination to be connected through this project include:  

• City Hall 

• Carol City High 

• Carol City Middle 

• Barbara Hawkins Elementary 

• Brentwood Park 

• Post Office 

• Multiple Apartment Buildings and Residential Neighborhoods 

• West Side Blueway Multi-Use Trail 

• The City of Miami Gardens Trolley 

The Get Moving project is co-designed by Community Liaisons—Miami Gardens residents hired to the project team to help enact the changes they wish to see in their communities. In addition to participating in the co-design process, Community Liaisons collect and analyze input from the broader community, connect with partners, and lead outreach.

About the Funder

Live Healthy Miami Gardens is a multi-year project aimed at making the City of Miami Gardens a healthier place to live, work and play. The project focuses on bringing the community together, developing a plan of action, increasing coordination, and making change that improves the health of Miami Gardens residents. The City of Miami Gardens is the primary coordinator of the project. The project is funded by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and Prevention, Racial and Ethnic Approached to Community Health (REACH).

Stay Connected

Do you have any questions or comments? Please feel free to reach out to Teara, Community Resident/Liaison at teara@urbanhp.org, or 305-676-7746. If you need assistance in Spanish, please contact Arely at arely@urbanhp.org. Si necesita ayuda en español, comuníquese con Arely a arely@urbanhp.org.

Community Liaisons

UHP has implemented our Community Liaison (CL) Framework in communities throughout South Florida. In support of our Live Healthy Miami Gardens projects, multiple CLs who are residents of Miami Gardens have been hired. The CLs help to advance each project and sustain the work over the long term. The CLs receive training and support to become champions for health and active transportation and work side-by-side with the UHP team.

Meet our Miami Gardens Community Liaisons! (Please stay tuned for updates)

Meet Ebony Harris

Ebony Harris has spent her adult life nurturing children through self-created programs that emphasize educational growth, daily living skills, and positive self-affirmations. As a City of Miami Gardens resident, her main objective as a Community Liaison is to continue to advocate for safe and conducive environments for Miami-Dade County students. Ebony joined UHP as a Community Liaison in October of 2019. Feel free to reach out to Ebony at ebony@urbanhp.org to learn more about this work. 

Meet Teara Jackson

Teara Letreace is a Black creative, native to Miami who approaches life and work with a passion for social justice, literature, and wellness. Growing up in North Miami and now residing in Miami Gardens, as a mother and advocate of a teen with Down Syndrome, she values the importance of ensuring underserved communities have access to inclusive wellness and educational programs and resources.

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Teara has over 10 years experience in event planning, community organizing and advocating, possessing an assertive hands-on work experience and social-minded communication style, along with a fun and focused work ethic. Currently pursuing certifications in Forrest and Restorative Yoga, her intention is to spark conversations about social justice, on and off the mat. Teara is dedicated to providing communities safe and healing spaces to grow in, while acquiring tools to empower individuals in their self-care practices. Teara joined UHP as a Community Liaison in June of 2020. Feel free to reach out to Teara at teara@urbanhp.org to learn more about this work. 

Meet Herman McLean

Herman McLean Jr is a highly skilled Licensed Mental Health Therapist, who has made his life’s purpose at bettering his community as well as other communities and the nation at large. Herman began working in a Psycho-Social Rehabilitation center as an Advocate and has been working within the clinical setting for over the past 10 years. As a graduate from St Thomas University, Herman has had the privilege of learning from some of the most innovative and knowledgeable therapist/educators to represent their respective areas of expertise.

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Herman’s interaction with various relational systems has led him to be curious enough to pursue a DMFT Doctoral Degree in Marriage and Family at Nova Southeastern University. Herman has experience working with issues including but not limited to: depression, anger, substance use, couples, and psychodynamic groups, for multiple age groups. Currently, as the Clinical Director of a Community Mental Health Organization, “Community Connections For Life”, Herman began to fulfill his purpose by challenging the ways in which therapy is viewed and it’s the accessibility to communities much like his own. Herman’s drive as a therapist comes with the premise of providing clients with a safe therapeutic environment, gaining insight and self-awareness, the ability to be expressive without judgment. “Through curiosity and discovery, we can begin to build and forge your new narrative”.  Herman joined UHP as a Community Liaison in June of 2020. Feel free to reach out to Herman at herman@urbanhp.org to learn more about this work. 


Previous Community Liaisons

Meet Michelle Booth

Michelle Booth joined UHP as a Miami Gardens Community Liaison in October of 2019. She is currently working on her master’s degree in School Counseling at St Thomas University. Michelle has an undergraduate degree in Criminal Justice with Homeland Security. Michelle was born and raised in the city of Carol City located in Miami Gardens. She hopes to maximize collaboration among all local families and schools to improve the quality of life of the families in the area. Prior to joining UHP, Michelle has worked at an Elementary School and Middle school in the hopes to bring a change with her outgoing spirit and her love for the community and the kids. She is passionate in helping and empowering the community through advocacy and developing strategies that improve health and social outcomes.


Meet Maritza Vereen

Maritza Vereen has spent her time on this project focused on the need to ensure that Miami Gardens children know how to navigate public spaces in a safe and appropriate way. As a mother, she sees the importance of ensuring that Miami Gardens and other cities have a built environment conducive to the needs of children of all ages and parents as they get to and from school.

About Our Collective Impact Work with Live Healthy Miami Gardens

Urban Health Partnerships has partnered with Live Healthy Miami Gardens (LHMG) since 2016 in support of a healthier and more equitable Miami Gardens community. Live Healthy Miami Gardens aims to foster and maintain a community culture of health and well-being for all residents of the city through access, information, activities and services. LHMG works to develop and implement community-level strategies to address 5 focus areas:  

• Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs 

• Healthy Eating and Improved Nutrition 

• Mental Health 

• Physical Activity 

• Primary Health Care

UHP has worked closely with the LHMG Physical Activity and Nutrition (PAN) Subcouncil to lead in the identification of policy, systems, and built and social environmental changes that can help increase physical activity and improve the health of Miami Gardens residents. UHP has partnered with LHMG on various projects. Visit the tabs on the left of this page for more information. 

Live Healthy Miami Gardens is an initiative aimed at making this vibrant neighborhood a healthier place to live. The initiative, which launched in 2014, focuses on bringing the community together, following a strategic plan of action, increasing coordination, and making change that improves the health of Miami Gardens residents. The City of Miami Gardens is the primary coordinator of the project. Health Foundation of South Florida, a nonprofit grantmaking organization, is providing the project up to $3.75 million in support over the first six years of the initiative. For more information on Live Healthy Miami Gardens, visit: http://livehealthymiamigardens.com/. 

Safe Routes to School

Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is an initiative that promotes walking and bicycling to school through a range of activities, such as infrastructure improvements, campaigns, tools, safety education, and encouragement incentives. In 2018, UHP worked with seven schools in Miami Gardens to develop a city-wide SRTS plan that identified a range of strategies that could be implemented locally for each of the 6Es: 

• Equity 

• Engineering 

• Encouragement 

• Engagement 

• Education 

• Evaluation 

Urban Health Partnerships strives to promote equity for disenfranchised and vulnerable communities throughout South Florida. In support of the recent removal of “Enforcement” as one of the “6 E’s” from the Safe Routes to School Framework by the National Safe Routes Partnership (Source: https://www.saferoutespartnership.org/blog/dropping-enforcement-safe-routes-school-6-e%E2%80%99s-framework), we are updating our materials and processes to include the new “E”  of “Engagement” instead. This change acknowledges the importance of listening and working with the community toward change but also recognizes the inequitable impacts of law enforcement on communities of color. This will be the first step in working with community members to identify Safe Routes to School strategies that are empowering and that prioritize the need for systemic change.

During the 2019/2020 school year, we have been working with four schools, Hibiscus Elementary, Rainbow Park Elementary, Carol City Middle, and North County K-8, to implement a school-specific SRTS implementation program. Each program is individualized using the range of strategies identified in the SRTS Plan. Activities include: 

• Parent Education 

• Walk and Bike to School Day Events 

• Open House Activities 

• Infrastructure Recommendations 

• Walking Audits 

• Progressive Ticketing 

• Safety Campaign 

• Tactical Urbanism Elements 

• Kid Activities 

Through this program, we aim to create safer and healthier opportunities for families to walk and bike not only to school, but throughout the community.  

UHP has implemented our Community Liaison (CL) Framework in communities throughout South Florida. In support of our Live Healthy Miami Gardens project, 3 CLs who are residents of Miami Gardens have been hired to serve as bike/walk community coordinators. The CLs will help advance the work and sustain the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) program over the long term. The CLs will receive training and support to become champions for health and active transportation and work side-by-side with the UHP team in the implementation of the SRTS strategies.  

Let’s Ride Learning Activity: This learning activity introduces kids to riding the Miami Gardens Express. The Miami Gardens Express is a free bus service that connects schools, parks, libraries, and many other places of interest around the city. The Let’s Ride resource walks kids through how to use a transit map, how to plan their ride, and how to follow the rules of riding safely. View below or download here.

Safe Routes for All Public Service Announcement: Now more than ever, people are having to walk or bicycle as a necessity to access food, employment, and many other basic needs. As Miami Gardens residents, we can help create a space that is safe for pedestrians and bicyclists. This video helps to explain why parking a vehicle that blocks the sidewalk can create a situation where people may need to enter the street or cross in a vehicle’s blind spot to pass.

About the Funder 

Health Foundation of South Florida

The mission of Health Foundation of South Florida is to invest in and be a catalyst for collaborations, policy and systems change that improves the health of South Florida communities, with a focus on vulnerable, low to moderate income populations. Established in 1993, the nonprofit foundation has awarded over $125 million to nonprofits providing programs and services in Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties. For more information, visit hfsf.org and follow @HealthSFL.

Wayfinding Plan

The goal of the Wayfinding Plan project was to create an active transportation wayfinding plan that builds off the existing signage throughout the City and creates a more explicit connection to community assets, such as parks, health centers, healthy restaurants, healthy stores, and schools. Wayfinding is a component of the Live Healthy Miami Gardens Community Action Plan and aligns with sub-strategies in the mental health, physical activity, nutrition, and primary care focus areas. The plan lays out the most important destinations to provide information on active transportation options for residents. An extensive network of parks, walking paths, bike lanes, trails, and bus and trolley service already canvas the City, this action plan improves those connections and could be installed through existing City of Miami Gardens funding or other grant opportunities. 

(Map of signage locations)

One of the essential components of providing wayfinding throughout a City is to provide information to residents and visitors so that they can orient themselves and navigate from place to place. The focus of this plan is to improve physical activity by providing information to the community about opportunities to walk, bicycle and ride transit to specific community assets in the City of Miami Gardens. The plan would highlight destinations to parks, health centers, and schools, but also will look at areas that the community could access for their daily needs such as commercial districts, healthy restaurants, healthy stores, and other points of interest. This plan is aimed at building off the signage that exists throughout the City of Miami Gardens near parks and at trolley stops. 

About the Funder

Live Healthy Miami Gardens is a multi-year project aimed at making the City of Miami Gardens a healthier place to live, work and play. The project focuses on bringing the community together, developing a plan of action, increasing coordination, and making change that improves the health of Miami Gardens residents. The City of Miami Gardens is the primary coordinator of the project. The project is funded by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Racial and Ethnic Approached to Community Health (REACH).

Master Mobility Plan

In 2018, UHP worked with the City of Miami Gardens to create a Master Mobility Plan that combined the siloed efforts of the different City departments into one comprehensive pedestrian and bicyclist vision for the community. The aim of the Master Mobility plan was to create a list of pedestrian and bicycle projects that would increase active transportation options throughout the City. The process produced a list of prioritized mobility projects and static mapping for the City to implement. 

About the Funder 

Health Foundation of South Florida 

The mission of Health Foundation of South Florida is to invest in and be a catalyst for collaborations, policy and systems change that improves the health of South Florida communities, with a focus on vulnerable, low to moderate income populations. Established in 1993, the nonprofit foundation has awarded over $125 million to nonprofits providing programs and services in Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties. For more information, visit hfsf.org and follow @HealthSFL. 

Policy, Systems, and Environmental Changes

The goal of this project when conducted in 2017, was for UHP to develop a list of physical activity strategies to create a safe environment that promotes walking and bicycling and increases Miami Gardens residents’ incidental physical activity levels. 

We utilized the reiterative step-by-step process to leverage community resources and address barriers in achieving the set goal. The 8-step process generated a list of strategies around policy, system, and environmental changes that would increase physical activity (PA) of Miami Gardens residents through bicycle and pedestrian improvements. 

Events

Upcoming Events

Please stay tuned for updates. 

Past Events

Hibiscus Elementary Walking Audit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Hibiscus Elementary Walk to School Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Rainbow Park Elementary Walk to School Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Carol City Middle Walk or Roll to School Day

Resources

Live Healthy Miami Gardens

https://livehealthymiamigardens.com


Safe Routes to School Partnerships

https://saferoutespartnership.org


Let’s Ride: Miami Gardens Express Learning Activity for Kids.

Click here to view.


iWalk Safe

http://iwalksafe.org/


iBike Safe

http://ibikesafe.org/


Smart Growth America: National Complete Streets Coalition

https://smartgrowthamerica.org/program/national-complete-streets-coalition/

Contact

Questions about our work with Live Healthy Miami Gardens?

Please contact Laurie Fucini-Joy, laurie@urbanhp.org.