Expanding Opportunities for Health in Small and Midsize Cities
Understanding smaller cities’ strengths, challenges, and opportunities for achieving health and well-being for all.
People, Parks, and Power: A National Initiative for Green Space, Health Equity, and Racial Justice
The purpose of this initiative is to increase participation of urban communities most impacted by park and green space inequities in policy advocacy and system change efforts to advance park equity.
Small and midsize cities are finding innovative solutions to expand health and well-being.
Across America, many small and midsize cities are experiencing a resurgence—due, in part, to investments in green spaces and parks, upswings in local tech hubs, and downtown redevelopment.
At the same time, these places—home to one in five people in the United States—face higher rates of premature death and poverty than larger cities. The factors driving these disparities vary widely, from shifting demographics, to changing economies and disinvestment, to inadequate municipal tax funding for basic services.
And the sharp rise in population growth has led some places to struggle with the negative impacts of gentrification and displacement that can exacerbate inequalities and poor health.
Amid these complex issues, with a range of partners, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is supporting the efforts of small and midsize cities across the nation to develop solutions that effectively leverage local resources and strengths. These include strengthening community ties, engaging residents, and identifying more opportunities for working across sectors.
Connected with these efforts, this collection shares key research on small and midsize cities; insights into effective strategies for creating healthier, more equitable places to live; and resources for cities across America working to achieve better health for all.
Housing and neighborhood conditions are inextricably linked to health and well-being. Learn more