Neighborhood Connections brings a 12-foot teepee to Wade Oval Wednesday July 30

Neighborhood Connections, the small-grants and grassroots community-building program affiliated with the Cleveland Foundation, is bringing a 12-foot teepee to the WOW! Wade Oval Wednesday concert on July 30. People will have an opportunity to share their thoughts about what makes for a healthy Greater University Circle. 

Neighborhood Connections and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine's Promoting Health Across Boundaries, an initiative within the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, have joined together on a "Listening Campaign." Staff from both organizations have spent the last few months out in the community talking with neighborhood residents and institutional leaders.  

Kurt Stange, MD, PhD, who heads up the PHAB initiative, says, "This partnership allows us to get a deeper understanding of community health by talking with residents and institutions that already have trusted relationships with Neighborhood Connections." Dr. Stange is a professor of family medicine, epidemiology & biostatistics, sociology and oncology at Case Western Reserve, where he holds the Gertrude Donnelly Hess, MD, Professorship of Oncology Research.

"Our listening campaign is trying to discover how to improve community health," says Danielle Price, program coordinator at Neighborhood Connections. "We are on a quest. There is a moment of opportunity here for the medical community and neighborhoods to work together differently. We want to find out what's already working, who the community champions are and bring everyone together to work to improve community health."  

The organizations’ long-term goal is to create a vision and plan for a healthier Greater University Circle, which includes the city of East Cleveland and seven Cleveland neighborhoods: Buckeye-Shaker, Central, Fairfax, Glenville, Hough, Little Italy and University Circle.  Some parts of the area have high unemployment rates as well as other factors that contribute to poor health, but it is also home to top-rated healthcare and educational institutions like University Hospitals, Cleveland Clinic, and Case Western Reserve University. 

Public broadcaster ideastream, whose mission in part is to strengthen our communities, will be on-hand, inside the teepee, to film people's responses to a series of questions about health in the community. The resulting film will debut later this year. 

Free and open to the public, the weekly WOW! Wade Oval Wednesdays attract thousands of people to Wade Oval in University Circle.  

Founded in 1843, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine is the largest medical research institution in Ohio and is among the nation's top medical schools for research funding from the National Institutes of Health. The School of Medicine is recognized throughout the international medical community for outstanding achievements in teaching. The School's innovative and pioneering Western Reserve2 curriculum interweaves four themes--research and scholarship, clinical mastery, leadership, and civic professionalism--to prepare students for the practice of evidence-based medicine in the rapidly changing health care environment of the 21st century. Nine Nobel Laureates have been affiliated with the School of Medicine.

Annually, the School of Medicine trains more than 800 MD and MD/PhD students and ranks in the top 25 among U.S. research-oriented medical schools as designated by U.S. News & World Report's "Guide to Graduate Education."

The School of Medicine is affiliated with University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, MetroHealth Medical Center, the Louis Stokes Cleveland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and the Cleveland Clinic, with which it established the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University in 2002.

About Neighborhood Connections

Neighborhood Connections is a grassroots community-building program created by the Cleveland Foundation in 2003. Neighborhood Connections awards small grants of up to $5,000 to fund citizen-led neighborhood projects, events, and activities that benefit Cleveland and East Cleveland. While most foundations solely extend grants to nonprofit organizations, Neighborhood Connections grants support the ideas of everyday people to make life better, right where they live. Through its grants, Neighborhood Connections seeks to build community by connecting people in Cleveland’s neighborhoods and encouraging them to become more engaged with each other and the city around them. Neighborhood Connections is guided by a grantmaking committee made up of 24 Cleveland and East Cleveland residents with a history of community involvement. The citizens’ committee reviews and approves all grants. Since 2003, Neighborhood Connections has awarded more than 1,800 grants totaling more than $6.9 million. For more information, visit

Media Contact(s):


Lila Mills, Neighborhood Connections, 216-203-0975,   

Jessica Studeny, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, 216-368-4692,