A Hartford Native Gives His Skills for a Healthier Northeast Neighborhood

By Alanna Vaughns, September 7, 2015 - 9:19pm

Dwight’s advanced mechanical skills, honed through hundreds of free repair hours at the local Catholic Worker house, are a powerful example of the rich assets that already exist for improving health in Northeast Hartford.

Dwight Teal is a warm-hearted bike mechanic from the North End of Hartford. During the summer, he dedicated his Tuesday afternoons to fixing bikes at free repair sessions organized by Community Solutions.

It may sound simple, but free bike repairs are part of Community Solutions' larger plan to help improve poor health outcomes in Northeast Hartford, which ranks worst in the city for potential years of life lost. We’re also working to improve fresh food access and make the local healthcare system simpler for residents to navigate, but there’s no substitute for helping people get and stay active. That means working with Dwight to get people outside and back on their bikes.

Dwight’s advanced mechanical skills, honed through hundreds of free repair hours at the local Catholic Worker house, are a powerful example of the rich assets that already exist for improving health in Northeast Hartford. And at the end of the day, he revels in the simple, irreplaceable pleasure of making kids smile by helping them get their wheels turning again.

Dwight, his mentor, Peter Georg, and other Hartford neighbors fixed 83 bikes this summer at Community Solutions bike repair events. We’re thankful to Hartford Community Loan Fund for their financial support and Ebony Horsewomen for providing snacks and spreading the word about this great service.

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