February 3, 2021
Social Determinants of Health Act of 2021
Introduced on Capitol Hill
On January 28, CLOCC joined Trust for America's Health and more than 300 endorsing organizations to thank Senators Tina Smith and Chris Murphy for introducing The Improving Social Determinants of Health Act of 2021. This legislation would empower public health departments and community organizations to act as chief health strategists in their communities and lead efforts to convene partners across sectors to build integrated systems. This bill is an important step to addressing inequities in health.
Report Spotlights Low Fruit and Vegetable Intake Rates for High School

From CDC's Healthy School Highlights: A recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report article found that in 2017, 7.1% of US high-school students met fruit intake recommendations, and 2.0% met vegetable intake recommendations. Per the CDC, it is important to expand existing school and community programs or identify new ways to encourage eating fruits and vegetables among adolescents, which includes using social media and other communication tools, to help address barriers and improve adolescent fruit and vegetable consumption.

Link Up Illinois Program Manager, Experimental Station
The Experimental Station fosters a dynamic ecology of innovative educational and cultural programs, small business enterprises and community initiatives. Since 2006, Experimental Station has both built programming to address local needs and has fostered, hosted, and sponsored many other initiatives. Current programs include Blackstone Bicycle Works, Link Up Illinois, 61st Street Farmers Market, small business incubation, and public arts and cultural events. Experimental Station is currently seeking a Link Up Illinois Program Manager who will be central to managing operations of Link Up Illinois as it grows. Learn more here.

Health Policy Coordinator, GOECD
The Governor’s Office of Early Childhood Development (GOECD) leads the State’s initiative to create an integrated system of quality early learning and development programs to support Illinois’ vision: We envision Illinois as a place where every young child – regardless of race, ethnicity, income, language, geography, ability, immigration status, or other circumstance – receives the strongest possible start to life so they grow up safe, healthy, happy, ready to succeed, and eager to learn. The Health Policy Coordinator manages early childhood health policy and programming. Learn more here.
It has been over a year since our last "traditional" CLOCC meeting and we miss our face-to-face interaction with friends and colleagues from across the network. While we look forward optimistically to our next in-person convening, we're continuing to publish "CLOCC Faces," so that you can learn a little more about the CLOCC staffers who are your teammates in the fight against childhood obesity, here in Chicago and beyond!
This week's featured CLOCC Face:
Community and School Programs Manager
What is your role at CLOCC, and how is your team moving the needle on obesity prevention?

As Community and School Programs Manager, I work with CLOCC's team of Community Program Coordinators to connect with partners at the city and neighborhood levels. We learn from partner experience and expertise about the ways in which health inequities manifest so that we understand and address each community's unique needs when it comes to developing and implementing obesity prevention strategies. The team also works to directly support schools with increasing achievement of Healthy CPS criteria and implementing the Whole School, Whole Child, Whole Community (WSCC) Model in pilot schools, taking a more holistic, upstream approach to school health. We also convene external school partners through the Food and Fitness Partner Network and +Network to implement systems and services that benefit students' health, wellness, and learning. 

What is the most exciting part about working for CLOCC, or working in obesity prevention in general?  

Obesity prevention involves a multi-strategy approach to systems, policy, and environmental change. It is exciting to watch projects and practices evolve as new research emerges, as we obtain feedback from individuals and communities, or when we simply rethink an old program or idea. For example, we are working to digitize and modernize CLOCC's Neighborhood Walkability and Accessibility Assessment Tool (NWAAT) to include detailed recommendations from community partners. It is exciting to be part of the tool's evolution and discussions around improving the tool's ease-of-use, the best way to assess for equity and inclusion in the built environment, and the social factors in a neighborhood that make walking feel safe and enjoyable. 

As a parent, are there aspects of your work that you find yourself applying in your everyday life?

Partners often share programs and resources on food and physical activity and I am always learning new healthy recipes to try, strategies for encouraging a toddler to try a new food, or fun physical activity to do at home.  

Where can we find you on when you're not working?

I have two small children, so we take many walks and spend a lot of time at the parks and lakefront. In the warmer months, you can find me playing beach volleyball. 

How are you staying healthy in the pandemic?  

Planning my weeks and establishing a routine, staying active, and enjoying time outside. 

CLOCC focuses upstream to identify the fundamental root causes of obesity, and to broaden the scope of our obesity prevention strategies. This work draws from local and national attention to health equity and social influencers of health, such as immigration, education, poverty and racism, all of which have an impact on people's ability to eat healthy and be active where they live, work, learn, and play. If you have comments or questions about this focus, we invite you to reach out to info@clocc.net.
Request for Applications: Increasing Healthy Options in Illinois Supportive and Transitional Housing Facilities

The Illinois Public Health Institute (IPHI), with funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), has announced an opportunity for Illinois supportive and/or transitional housing facilities to increase access to healthy food and beverage options by adopting and implementing tailored nutrition guidance for their organizations. Grants will be provided to offset the time and resources required to adjust the foods served to better support the health of residents (and staff, if applicable). To facilitate the change-making process, awardees will also gain access to at least 20 hours of individualized technical assistance and to training and networking opportunities. Funding is available to support up to four organizations.

Application due date and time: Friday, February 26th at 5:00 pm CST
Awardees will be notified by: Wednesday, March 10th at 5:00 pm CST
Award value: $4,000 - $6,000 per organization
Project timeline: March 2021 – March 2022
Eligibility: Supportive and transitional housing facilities in Illinois are eligible to apply. Priority will be given to organizations in Cook County, the Peoria/Tazewell/Woodford Tri-County region, and Jackson County, but other regions are welcome to apply.
Please send applications and questions to: Kathryn.Bernstein@iphionline.org with subject line “Nutrition Guidelines in Housing Application.”
As our public health community responds collectively to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, CLOCC will work to provide partners with timely, useful information to help leaders, organizations and families navigate uncharted waters. Suggestions for this newsletter feature can be forwarded to info@clocc.net.
Do you have questions about COVID-19? Lurie Children's COVID-19 Call Center is now OPEN. You can call (312) 227-5300 and speak with a Lurie Children's nurse with questions related to testing criteria, symptoms, donations, or general information. The Call Center is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and closed Sunday.

Additionally, if you would like to contact a social worker, psychologist or child life specialist for information on community referrals or coping resources, you can call (312) 227-4118 and leave a message. Your call will be returned within 24 hours, Monday through Friday.


  • New! The Chicago Blackhawk Foundation has opened the application for their West Side Small Business Grant Recovery Program. Businesses located in certain West Side communities who are owned at least 50% by an individual who identifies as a person of color are eligible for the support.



  • Food Systems Leadership Network COVID-19 Response Group: The Food Systems Leadership Network COVID-19 Response Group listserv, unique among the many opportunities food systems leaders have to connect and share information and resources, is focused specifically on identifying, amplifying, and replicating the solutions, innovations, and collaborations that are emerging in communities across the US in response to and in the wake of COVID-19.


  • CLOCC has introduced "CLOCC Healthy at Home for Chicago Public Schools," a free, comprehensive collection of resources to assist teachers, staff and Healthy CPS partners provide kids and families with knowledge and resources to assist with schooling at home during the pandemic.

  • Garfield Park Conservatory has made available "Nature Play Every Day," a collection of printable activity materials to learn more about plants, nature, and everything in between.

  • Common Threads is offering our Small Bites Nutrition Education program for FREE to Elementary Students in an On-Demand format. Learners can explore nutrition topics through nine interactive lessons hosted on the educational platform Nearpod. Each lesson will feature engaging activities, snack making videos, and more. Click here.

  • Action for Healthy Kids created and collected resources to help families, educators and school staff keep kids active and stay healthy while navigating a new school year amid uncertainty. Resources will be added continually.

  • The Chicago Citywide Literacy Coalition has amassed a comprehensive list of digital education resources, organized by subject and supplemented with links to digital support services. While CCLC focuses on adult education, many resources listed are applicable to families and head-of-households.

  • Pilot Light’s Family Resources are designed for parents and children to provide a time of learning and deeper connection through the act of sharing and making food. This library of resources will continue to grow and include Family Lessons in both English and Spanish, Family Meal Videos, recipes, and more as a way to bring food education into homes.


  • ChangeLab Solutions is maintaining a library of COVID-19 resource material that includes sections on legal preparedness, food security, housing, violence prevention and more.

  • Access Living has COVID-19 resources for the disability community, with information tailored to additional audiences including those caring for elders, the LGBTQ community, sex workers and people with high-risk comorbidities. This page will be updated routinely during the crisis.

  • The League of American Bicyclist’s Bicycle Friendly America program provides a roadmap, hands-on assistance, and recognition for states, communities, universities, and businesses that promote bicycle-friendly communities and businesses. Apply by February 10th for recognition as a Bicycle Friendly Community and by February 11th as a Bicycle Friendly Business.  
  • 5-4-3-2-1 Go!
  • fiveSMART