Dozens of teams of volunteers were speckled throughout the city of Hartford on the morning of June 9, 2018 with a shared mission in mind: to help Hartford residents take steps toward health.
Over the course of just a few hours, more than 200 volunteers from 21 churches and parachurch organizations distributed more than 7,000 fluorescent green bags stuffed with information about free and low-cost health services and incentives to improve health and wellness to people in the North End, West End, Downtown and South End of Hartford. With each personal exchange of a Revitalize resource bag also came the offer for prayer, which 400 residents accepted.
The bags that were distributed included a Revitalize resource booklet (which also helps point residents to RevitalizeHartford.com, a site updated by Urban Alliance throughout the year with additional resources and services in the city), a coupon for free Hartford farmers market produce, and information aboutMobile Foodshare and the Summer Meals Program.
These efforts were part of an expression of Urban Alliance's Revitalize initiative, which helps churches and parachurch organizations reach and serve Hartford residents who have very limited access to affordable health services and good quality fresh food, to help them improve their nutrition and decrease the prevalence of adverse health conditions like diabetes and heart disease.
Additional bags are distributed by schools and other churches and parachurch organizations in the Urban Alliance network.
This year, health screenings were offered at the Citadel of Love and Faith Ministries on the day of the outreach so residents could immediately take a step to better understand their health status. FaithCare provided cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar screenings to 32 people, St. Francis' Curtis D Robinson Men's Health Institute completed 12 prostate cancer screenings, and Caring Family Pregnancy Services provided ultrasounds to three women.
Feedback from volunteers confirmed that the outreach gave people hope and provided an increase in awareness of local available services.
“Our visit seemed like an answer to prayer,” shared one volunteer.
Since the first Revitalize Community Health Outreach took place in 2012, more than 72,000 health resource bags have been distributed throughout Hartford.
A special thank you Calvary Church of West Hartford, Calvary Fellowship,Church Army USA, Citadel of Love, Ebenezer Pentecostal Church, Faith Ministries Church, FaithCare, Glastonbury Community Church, Glory Chapel International Cathedral, House of Restoration Church, Minesterios Tiempo de Cosecha, Our Savior Lutheran Church, Pentecost Deliverance Christian Ministries, Phillips Metropolitan CME Church, The First Cathedral, UMC Hartford, Valley Brook Community Church, Wellspring Church, Wethersfield Evangelical Free Church, Wilson-Gray YMCA and Wintonbury Church, who prepared for and participated in the 2018 Revitalize Community Health Outreach Day!