Our Communities

Initially Healthy Central Florida (HCF) is focusing on the three communities of Eatonville, Maitland and Winter Park, Florida.  This is the footprint of the Winter Park Health Foundation and a key service area of Florida Hospital, the two founders and funders of HCF.  Culturally rich, ethnically diverse and committed to health, these contiguous communities have cooperative relationships, strong ties to one another and leaders who are walking the talk on health. As HCF develops, tests and refines its community health model, it may expand to other surrounding communities.


Designing a Healthy Eatonville

The historic town of Eatonville, the oldest African American incorporated community in the nation, celebrated its 125-year anniversary in 2012.  Now they are looking forward and asking – what will the future of Eatonville look like and how can they create a healthier community for the next 125 years.

The Healthy Eatonville Leadership, created through Healthy Central Florida to work with the Town of Eatonville, is striving to make policy changes on the local level aimed at making the healthy choice the easy choice for Eatonville’s residents.  The group is made up of community volunteers from a wide variety of areas including schools, faith, city government, local businesses and the mayor.   From refurbishing a gym, to installing bike racks to organizing a clean-up day, the Team is working to create long-term sustainable healthy changes that improve the health of residents today and in the future.

Join Eatonville’s Walk And Talk

Over three years ago, former Mayor Bruce Mount launched the “Walk and Talk with the Mayor” because he recognized that the town was experiencing a health crisis.  A UCF study, commissioned by Healthy Central Florida, confirmed what the former mayor sensed – that residents were experiencing a health crisis.  The study showed that the rate of diabetes among Eatonville residents was 24.2% – nearly triple the national average and nearly double that of African Americans. So, he began walking and he invited residents to join him.

The walks in Winter Park and Maitland were inspired in part by former Mayor Mount, and his twice weekly “Walk and Talk with the Mayor”.  Residents of Eatonville now come twice a week for a 30-minute walk, using a variety of routes through the community.  The walk, which is usually attended by 20 – 30 participants is followed by friendly conversation about town issues.

The group meets at 7:00 am on Monday and Wednesday morning at the Hungerford Cafeteria located at 100 E. Kennedy Blvd. No registration required – just show up and you will be warmly welcomed!

Heard Around Town

HealthyCentralFlorida-0037Interlachen - Copy“It has been a truly pleasure and an honor to serve on the Healthy Eatonville Team (HET).  I feel like I am living a dream as I see the Eatonville community rally behind the HET initiatives and return to its greatest days – like those I remember as a child and then a young man growing up here. We’re once again becoming a community where residents are healthy and prospering.  I can see a day where people across the country to come to visit the ‘Oldest Black Township in the US’ as they did when I was growing up.
Today, we have bike racks in the community to begin to be a ‘bikeable’ community and a workout center available to Eatonville residents.  We’re about to open Healthy Eatonville Place which will have a primary focus on diabetes prevention. Diabetes can be prevented in many of our residents by simply focusing living a healthy lifestyle.   I am beyond proud to be part of the HET and help others enhance the quality of their lives.”

— John Beacham, President, Red Bud Landscaping & Irrigation, Inc.

Healthy Eatonville Leadership Team

  • Baruti Abdallah-Nosakhere, Events Coordinator, Positive Flow Foundation
  • Lisa Abdallah-Nosakhere, Secretary, Fundraising Director, Positive Flow Foundation
  • Rod Bargaineer, Dir. of Recreation, Town of Eatonville
  • Dr. Lisa Barkley, Assistant Dean, Diversity and Inclusion and Assistant Professor of Medicine, UCF College of Medicine
  • John Beacham, President, Red Bud Landscaping & Irrigation, Inc.
  • Ellareetha Carson, Founding Partner/Nutritionist, Hebni Nutrition Consultants
  • Letecia Foster, Principal, Hungerford Elementary School
  • Michael French, President, Lake Lovely Neighborhood Association
  • Katrina Jackson, Lab Technician, Florida Hospital
  • Deandre Kemp, Public Ally, Florida Hospital
  • Robert Keyes, Program Dir., Boys & Girls Clubs of Central FL
  • Felix Lake, Sr., Community Volunteer
  • John Riordan, Dir. Community Relations, Community Health Centers
  • Dwanika Walker, Director, Community Health Centers of Eatonville and Pine Hills
  • Tonja Williams, Parish Nurse, Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church

To learn more about Healthy Eatonville or Healthy Central Florida, please reach out to a fellow team member or email info@healthycf.org or call Healthy Central Florida at 407.644.2300.


Designing a Healthy Maitland

Beautiful gardens, lakes, and open air spaces listed on the National Register of Historic Places all make picturesque Maitland a wonderful place to walk, bike, savor the outdoors and enjoy culture and history.

Maitland has a strong tradition of promoting and supporting walking and biking to school for children who’ve long participated in the Walk and Roll program at Dommerich Elementary and Maitland Middle School.  With its many lakes and tree-lined routes, Maitland is ideal for adult walkers and cyclists too and now there’s the opportunity to walk with others as Maitland rolls out “Maitland Walks”, a community-wide initiative to get all of Maitland walking!

Maitland Walks

The Healthy Maitland Team and the City of Maitland, along with the Maitland Public Library have joined together to launch weekly walks and marked walking paths throughout Maitland.  Marked walking paths have been established and we are continuing to add more.  Walk and Roll Wednesdays are a fun way for kids to walk and bike to school every Wednesday – and parents are encouraged to participate with their kids.

Also for adults are weekly walks hosted by the Maitland Public Library.  The group meets at 7:00 am. and the walk is designed for all levels and will be followed by coffee and talk with residents, library staff and periodically with Maitland City Commission members, the mayor or senior city staff.

The Walking Group meets at the Maitland Public Library at 501 Maitland Avenue South, Maitland, FL 32751 – (407) 647-7700. It is free and everyone is invited.  Every walker will receive a free t-shirt and pedometer, courtesy of Healthy Central Florida which is co-promoting the Walks. Registration is not required.

Heard Around Town

becky-nickol“Maitland is a wonderful community on many levels. It encompasses both the “old” and “new” of Florida. The tree-lined streets and small communities are perfect venues for walking, biking and meeting neighbors. Because I live in a subdivision where properties have large yards, I have an organic and butterfly garden, a koi pond, and a small, cozy greenhouse. Living in Maitland encourages a healthy, open-air lifestyle. It doesn’t get any better than Maitland!”

— Becky Nickol, Coach/Therapist, Maitland resident

Healthy Maitland Leadership Team

  • Lindsey Carter, Community Volunteer, Lake Sybelia Elementary
  • Marian Chase, Adjunct Faculty Member, UCF College of Nursing
  • Angela Jacobe, Reference and Outreach Librarian, Maitland Public Library
  • Jean Kingsford, Regional Marketing Manager, MVP Sports Clubs
  • Dale McDonald, Mayor, City of Maitland
  • Michelle Sartor, Certified Health Coach
  • Stacie Larson, Director, Maitland Public Library
  • Catherine L. Sterba, Dir. of Client Services, DiCom Software LLC
  • Jonnie Mae Warner, President, Maitland Center Office Complex

For more information about Healthy Maitland, email info@healthycf.org.

Winter Park

Designing a Healthy Winter Park

Known for its stately trees, abundant parks, spectacular homes, lakes, canals, museums and shopping, Winter Park has also become a hub for cycling and the triathlon community.  On any given day, hundreds of cyclists and runners use the streets and trails in and around Winter Park for recreation and increasingly, for transportation. The beautiful oak canopy that lines many streets and trails makes running and walking in hot summer months just a little bit cooler.

Residents and visitors also frequent the Cady Way Trail which connects to the region’s growing trail system and the city’s many parks and recreation facilities. It offers elite athletes, as well as families out for a stroll, a safe place to walk, bike, skate and jog.  Every Saturday, a large Farmer’s Market offers fresh and increasingly locally grown fruits, vegetables, plants and healthy food choices.

The Healthy Winter Park Team is building on the community’s many assets to build one of the most walkable, bikeable cities in the United States.

Winter Park Walks

Join us as we walk with friends and neighbors for fun and fitness.  Better than a cup of coffee, starting your day off with our free 40-minute walk will energize you for the entire day.  The group meets at the Winter Park Public Library at 460 E. New England Avenue every Tuesday at 7:00 a.m. New walkers will receive a free pedometer and t-shirt while supplies last.  Registration is not required.

Walk with a Doc

Take a Walk with a Doc from Florida Hospital—it’s a great new way to get healthy, get the scoop on reliable health information, and meet new friends.

It’s a fact that the simple act of walking improves your physical and mental health. It also improves your well-being when you get out, meet new people and try new things.  The new Walk with a Doc Program will enable you to spend time with and get to know outstanding physicians,  and ask medical questions in an informal, relaxed, and fun way –all while meeting new friends who are also interested in getting healthy.

Join us! We meet at the Peggy and Philip B. Crosby YMCA Wellness Center, and the 30-minute walks are free and open to everyone.

Walk with a Doc is sponsored by Healthy Central Florida and Florida Hospital

When:  Thursdays at 6:00 p.m.

What: Moderately Paced (all levels are welcome) 30-minute walks & Q&A with Florida Hospital Docs

Where: Meet at the Peggy and Philip B. Crosby YMCA Wellness Center – and walk a 2-mile route from there

2005 Mizell Ave.

Winter Park, FL 32792

Other Winter Park Walks:

Winter Park Walks at the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce – Thursday 8:00 a.m. and Fridays 10:00 a.m. – 151 West Lyman Avenue – FREE

Heard Around Town

sue-gilman“When I moved to Winter Park in 1985 I didn’t have any idea how much I was going to love it. The town and its beautiful environs foster my love of an active outdoor lifestyle. I ride my Vespa to work almost every day, take walks through the canopied streets and parks with my dog, and I take long bike rides most Saturdays – up to 30 miles on the Cady Way trail. It’s smooth, wide, and feels safe because lots of people use it…walkers, runners, mom’s pushing strollers, and of course, other cyclists.”

— Sue Gilman, Realtor, Winter Park resident

Healthy Winter Park Leadership Team

  • Larry Adams, Principal-in-Charge and a Founding Partner of ACi Architects
  • Joie Cadle, School Board Chairman, Orange County Public Schools
  • Marian Chase, Adjunct Faculty Member, UCF College of Nursing
  • Mark Freid, President, Think Creative
  • Abby Gulden, Sustainability and Permitting Coordinator, City of Winter Park
  • Sara Isaac, Strategist & Copy Chief, Salter>Mitchell
  • Steve Leary, Mayor, City of Winter Park
  • Sharon Line Clary, Exec. Dir./Marketing & Business Dev., WP Memorial Hospital
  • Micki Meyer, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, Rollins College
  • Joan Nelson, Heart of FL United Way
  • Michelle Neuner, Assistant City Mgr., City of Winter Park
  • David Overfield, Environmental Administrator, Orange County Health Dpt.
  • Shawn Shaffer, Executive Director, Winter Park Public Library

For more information about Healthy Winter Park, please email info@healthycf.org.