Why Place and Race Matter — Now in Spanish

Engaged Institutions

Advocates in California’s Central Valley are targeting resources from the state’s Safe Routes to School program—paid for with federal transportation funds—to low-income communities. In the past, resources for this program have been more focused in higher-income communities across California. Advocates are seeking resources for low-income areas, both urban and rural, that lack sidewalks and other physical infrastructure to make walking or biking to school a safe alternative to driving as well as a viable alternative to increase physical activity and reduce obesity.

Such cross-boundary innovations are evident in a growing movement known as “engaged institutions.” Organizations of all sorts—from street-level service providers to K-12 schools to world-class universities—are increasingly recognizing they are part of the fabric of a community, and they are stepping up to the task of making it a healthy place for all.

  • Excerpt from Why Place & Race Matter written by Judith Bell and Mary M. Lee of PolicyLink and funded by The California Endowment.
  • Available for free download in English or Spanish.



Are there “engaged institutions” in your community?

Who are they and what are they doing to make places healthy for all people?

What can citizen advocates do to help?

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