Hough Cleveland


The Hough Neighborhood, home to just under 12,000 residents, is one of Cleveland’s oldest neighborhoods on the east side and is considered to be among the poorest neighborhoods in Cleveland. Forty-eight percent of the residents live below the federal poverty level; 72% of children (age 0-17) live below the poverty level; 28 percent of the residents live in deep poverty; and 69 percent of the residents live at or near the poverty level.  In 2011, Cleveland made national headlines for being the nation’s “infant mortality capital.” The city’s infant mortality rate of 12.9 infant deaths per 1,000 live births on average is double that of the national rate, and the 2010 infant mortality rate for babies born to Black mothers was 18.1 per 1,000 live births compared to the 4.8 for babies born to White mothers.  In the predominantly Black Hough neighborhood, the infant mortality rate is 22.1 infant deaths per 1,000 live births. While the Hough neighborhood reflects many social disparities that contribute to the staggering infant mortality rate, it is also ideally geographically situated in proximity to major community assets that include the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University.


The State of Ohio, City of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County and the Greater University Circle Community Health Initiative (GUCCHI) are assertively developing and initiating strategies to improve the health of those in the Hough neighborhood and surrounding areas. Over the past two years, the GUCCHI team has been working closely with Greater University Circle residents, anchor institutions and representatives of community organizations such as Birthing Beautiful Communities (the Zone’s Backbone Organization) to build an environment of shared understanding, and trust, to collaboratively improve the health of residents. Birthing Beautiful Communities Best Babies Zone will continue to work with the Greater University Circle Community Health Initiative to address social determinants of health that are detrimentally and inequitably impacting pregnant women and their babies in the Hough neighborhood. The other members of the BBC Best Babies Zone are dedicated, skilled and experienced community, neighborhood, education and health professionals that have all worked with Birthing Beautiful Communities and Neighborhood Connections (the Zone’s Local Champion) to improve conditions in the Hough neighborhood, particularly as they pertain to infant mortality.


Stay tuned!