Access to quality health care is a particular challenge for low-income residents. Detroit LISC worked last year to close that gap by helping Community Health and Social Services (CHASS) open a new health care center in Southwest Detroit, an area where many residents are uninsured or on Medicaid. LISC’s $3 million loan, with capital from State Farm, meant CHASS could more than doubled its exam facilities and create 50 full-time medical jobs and 150 construction jobs. The new facility offers expanded preventive services, including screening for colon and cervical cancers and wellness, exercise, nutrition and cooking programs.
In 16 cities and rural areas around the country, LISC and our partners are addressing pressing public safety issues at the neighborhood level. In Greenville, Miss., for example, Mid-South Delta LISC and the Community Safety Initiative is strengthening neighborhood associations and formalizing safety teams to work with law enforcement. Residents like Teresa Johnson (pictured), who has lived in north Greenville since age 7, know more about the neighborhood than most. By including her voice in program design—and those of other resident voices committed to their community’s health—we can bolster public confidence and help police set priorities. Safety programs coincide with other LISC development efforts in the area to improve overall quality of life.
Super Bowl XLVI is over. But, thanks to an effort sparked by LISC, the NFL adopted the Near East Side neighborhood and its revitalization plan as its Super Bowl legacy project. Its centerpiece is the Chase Near East Side Legacy Center, a community and recreation center and playing field that opened in January. LISC partnered with JPMorgan Chase to use $14.5 million of our New Markets Tax Credit allocation and added a $200,000 NFL-LISC Grassroots grant to help the project move forward. The Center provides a full-service gym, classrooms, a greenhouse, and an NFL practice-quality football field. This effort has spurred more than $150 million in new affordable housing, business creation and infrastructure improvements that will have a lasting legacy in the neighborhood long after the game.
Lasting change cannot take hold in communities where crime is rampant, health care is nonexistent and the only green space is dirty and dangerous. Sustainable communities look much different. They offer safe corner playgrounds for kids, lush walking paths for seniors and community police partnerships that reduce violence and create a sense of shared neighborhood interest. They are healthy places to live, work, do business and raise families.
LISC’s investments in healthier living run the gamut. We support high quality athletic fields, recreational facilities and art programs. We drive community safety efforts that mitigate crime spikes. We fund the development of neighborhood health clinics, parks and community gardens that help families lead healthier lives.