August 24, 2022
In 2019, Residents of historic Orchard Knob and Parkridge Medical Center’s senior leadership began working together to envision a healthier and more vibrant neighborhood. Hospital staff and residents invited additional organization partners to the table and the Orchard Knob Collaborative was formed.
The Orchard Knob Collaborative (OKC) is taking a three-phase approach to community revitalization, focusing on physical infrastructure, social infrastructure and healthy living. The main mission of the OKC is to improve the health and well-being of the community by addressing social determinants of health. Additional OKC community partners include the Enterprise Center, EPB, green|spaces, Habitat for Humanity, Glass House Collaborative, Chattanooga Design Studio, and the City of Chattanooga among more.
In 2022, the OKC was awarded a $600,000 grant by the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Connected Communities initiative to start a pilot program aimed at expanding access to internet connectivity, digital technology and services to improving the health and quality of life of OKC residents.
The pilot program seeks to impact 1,000 residents in the Orchard Knob and surrounding neighborhoods by installing additional public Wi-Fi sites as part of the EPB QuickConnect public Wi-Fi network. Parkridge Medical Center has pledged to provide telehealth appointments, when needed, to those same residents using the new Wi-Fi connections.
The OKC is one of only nine projects TVA funded out of more than 40 grant applications from across a seven-state area.
Working with the City of Chattanooga, staff members of Parkridge Medical Center, Habitat for Humanity, green | spaces of Chattanooga and Orchard Knob residents celebrated an act of service on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day by planting 30 trees in the Historic Orchard Knob community.
“Inadequate and unsafe housing can lead to prolonged illness,” Parkridge Health System President & CEO Tom Ozburn said. “Ensuring that our neighbors who receive care from Parkridge return to homes that aid their recovery is essential, and it’s why we first started the Orchard Knob Collaborative. We’re excited by the way our initial partnerships have grown, and by this holistic Smart City approach to public health and quality of life.”
Since the OKC originated, 10 neighborhood homes have been renovated with some currently in progress. Additionally, more than 25 Food RX classes have been conducted, 100 trees have been planted, 1,000 snack bags have been delivered to neighborhood children, more than $70,000 in home renovation investments have been made and more than $150,000 have been raised.
Scroll down the page until you see "Donate to the Orchard Knob Collaborative Project