CGIU 2015 Commitments

Cougar Chefs

Commitment Group: Brinda Penmetsa, Ton La Jr., Dave Giang, Naina Sakruti, Joshua Monsivais

*Winner in The Resolution Project Social Venture Challenge
Cougar Chefs will be partnering with on and off campus organizations to provide fresh and healthy food to neighboring Third Ward residents in a sustainable manner. The program will take advantage of leftover food from campus dining facilities and restaurants, raise awareness of how unserved food can be reutilized, and primarily educate community residents about proper nutrition, healthy food options, and health implications that arise from restricted access to quality foods. Ultimately, through Cougar Chefs, students will engage in civic service while developing a sense of community and bringing needed attention to food inequity and malnutrition in the Third Ward.


LIFE Initiative

Commitment Maker: Sandra Wang

*Finalist in The Resolution Project Social Venture Challenge
the Houston LIFE Initiative, or Lifestyle Intervention through Fitness and Exercise, which aims to bring a holistic team of certified health care and fitness professionals to lower income families in order for them to achieve a healthier lifestyle and a better quality of life. The first part of this project is to research how our Third Ward neighbors perceive their environment, how that leads to stress and its effects on physical activity, and using that information to advise and shape the Initiative's goal to address barriers of the population it is serving.


Nourish to Health

Commitment Maker: Annabella Bruzual

Nourish to Health aims to promote breastfeeding amongst low income women and to empower them topledge to breastfeed for at least 6 months by providing breastfeeding kits and partnering up with local organizations to provide support. There are many factors and barriers that prevent low income women from breastfeeding the recommended time. Nourish to Health target is to lessen the barriers amongst low income women and support them during their pledge to breastfeed.


Project Health

Commitment Group: Greta Bellinger, Elizabeth Lowrey, Margaret Mayer

Project Health is a community health fair project, beginning in the Third Ward of Houston, TX. The goal of Project Health is to engage the local community in health education by providing services and resources to those in need. By providing individuals with health education, services and resources, we hope to positively affect the overall behavioral, social, and environmental conditions of each participant. In addition to serving the community, we hope to impact the larger community of Houston by addressing the stigmatization surrounding mental illness.


Cycling: A Cure-All

Commitment Maker: Nabiha Hossain

This commitment to action is designed to use cycling as a solution to the campus’ traffic and parking problem. There is a growing demand for cycling safety in the area, but not enough supply has been created to feed it.  Creating safer cycling in the UH area will also allow for seamless union of UH and the rest of the Third Ward Community.


SURE Boot Camp: Energizing the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem for returning veterans

Commitment Maker: Terri King, Tamara Pinkerton

The Stimulating Urban Renewal through Entrepreneurship (SURE) Program at the University of Houston includes a student-run Incubator that provides a support structure for small startups and struggling businesses in Houston. This Commitment, the SURE Boot Camp, focuses on recruiting returning veterans who are interested in starting a business after leaving the military.  This project will identify veterans who are seeking assistance from the USO. Once identified, the veterans will be enrolled in our Boot Camp program to be held over Summer, 2015.  In these sessions, veterans will be paired with Bauer graduate students and community business leaders to develop a viable business plan and to prepare them to apply for microloans from KivaZip, LiftTexas, or other funding partners. We will continue our relationship with our entrepreneurs through the SURE Incubator program to support the growth of their businesses.