Built Environment Assessment
January 7, 2016
Pictured above is Anthony Shepard posing in front of a local barbershop during PACT’s Algonquin Built Environment Assessment. Anthony Shepard and Dahabo Kerow are PACT in Action’s co-chairs and graduating seniors!!!! We’re really appreciative of the great work they have put forth in creating a safer and healthier Louisville thus far. Both Anthony and Dahabo worked really hard to write the following piece.
Where you live has a major effect on how you live. Pact In Action has been documenting the unhealthy factors in the 40210 neighborhoods to try and correct the unseen dangers, we called this project the Built Environment Assessment. The Built Environment Assessment is very important because it gives the observers a better understanding of the community, it shows how an unhealthy lifestyle could come from your neighborhood, and the dangerous effects coming from an unhealthy community. During the assessment we observed sidewalk connectivity, curb ramps, lighting, and housing also anything that stuck out as a factor.
To know the effects of living in a dangerous neighborhood you’d first have to get a better understanding. While documenting the neighborhoods we got an understanding of how many vacancy’s are on a street, the sidewalk connectivity, and if there is enough lighting, we also documented curb ramps and anything that stuck out to us like trashy smells, illegal dumping, and graffiti, it could be anything out of the norm. What we have learned is a majority of people don’t realize that there is something wrong with their neighborhood, its not that there’s something wrong with living there but there are factors that lead to an unhealthy lifestyle and they might not even know it. Everyone should have the chance to make their neighborhood a safer and healthier place.
Coming from a neighborhood that has these unhealthy factors can lead to a unhealthy lifestyle. A statement at PACT In Action that we all agree on is if we go out everyday and see trash, horrible sidewalks, negative graffiti, and broken down houses we would reflect that back on ourselves negatively, and if someone does not care about their self why would that person care for anyone else? While doing the assessment we found numerous things in the neighborhood that could lead to this mindset, such as graffiti that had negative messages and profanity, seeing these negative messages everyday becomes a norm and is locked in our subconscious allowing someone to become desensitized to it, or allowing that to label them. This can also happen from trash, run down streets & sidewalks and vacant housing.
Some may ask, how could being from an unhealthy neighborhood be dangerous? Basically pact in action came together and brainstormed what leads to a unhealthy lifestyle or someone who lives a life revolved around violence, and we concluded that your neighborhood is one of those factors. We see on the news all day long about violent acts coming from neighborhoods that suffer from poverty, our neighborhood reflects on who we are. No one deserves to live an unhealthy lifestyle because of where they are from. The mindset of not knowing your self worth can be destructive.
There are many factors that lead to violence and it is our job as people to point out these problems and solve them. The Built Environment Assessment helps create an understanding of what a healthy neighborhood should look like, how an healthy lifestyle could come from your neighborhood, and how the dangerous effects can be corrected and cause a more safe and healthier lifestyle, you can help by joining pact in action or supporting the Built Environment Assessment by coming to our community conversation and joining in on our observations.”