About Shape Up Somerville

Shape Up Somerville is a a 15-year-old strategy to build and sustain a healthier, more equitable community for everyone who lives in, works in, and visits Somerville. SUS works toward these goals by focusing on healthier food access and active living.

Shape Up Somerville is a 15 year old strategy to build and sustain a healthier, more equitable community for everyone that lives in, works in, and visits the city. SUS works towards these goals through collaborating with partners, creating environmental change, and advocating for social justice. SUS began in 2002 as a CDC-funded research study led by Somerville community members and Tufts University, to prevent obesity in 1st-3rd graders through environmental change. Following the 3-year study, SUS was adopted by the City of Somerville and has since continued to evolve as a comprehensive approach to build and support community-wide health, health equity, and social justice  for all.


A healthier and more equitable community for all who live, work, play and age in Somerville.


Building healthy, equitable communities in Somerville through interdisciplinary partnerships, programming, and policies related to food systems and active living.

We achieve our mission through:

  • Systems Change: engage all sectors and levels of the community including local government, businesses, schools, non-profits, healthcare, grass-roots organizations, and individuals, to create policy change that promotes community-wide health and well-being.
  • Collective Impact: with SUS acting as the backbone support organization, work to bring community partners together in a structured manner to achieve social change through a common agenda, shared measurement systems, mutually reinforcing activities, and continuous communication.
  • Social Determinants of Health: focus on engaging at risk populations, including but not limited to: ethnic minorities, immigrants, low-income residents, and non-English speakers on a multitude of issues.
  • Increase Access to Healthy Food: Supporting Food Rescue System, Affordable Mobile Farmers’ Markets, School Gardens/Farm to School, Healthy Restaurant Program, School Food Service Improvements, Urban Agriculture Connections, Worksite Wellness, and Healthy Worksites.
  • Increase Access to Physical Activity Opportunities: Extension of the Community Path, Green Line Subway Extension, Structured Physical Activity throughout the School Day, Walkable and Bikeable Streets, Neighborways, and Worksite WellnessHealthy Worksites.

Learn more about the original research study from Tufts University's Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy.

  • Fresh Local Food Access

  • Ways to Get Going

  • Media

  • Our Grants

  • In the News

  • Somerville Mobile Farmers' Market

    Bringing fresh, local produce to a street near you. This website has our hours, weekly produce offerings, and information on how to apply for food assistance benefits in Somerville.

  • 'Shape Up Approved' Menu & Restaurant Guide

    A complete listing of Shape Up Somerville's approved menus at participating restaurants.

  • Somerville Farm to School Program

    Empowering students to be informed and mindful of eating and food systems.

  • Somerville Food Resource Guide

    A comprehensive guide to the City's community meals, pantries, markets, gardens, and more.

  • Somerville Urban Agriculture Blog

    Fresh stories about urban agriculture efforts in the City.

  • Safe Tap Water Access

    Look for water bottle filling stations in newly renovated parks and in the High School. In partnership with the schools, working on a needs assessment to add more stations. Click here for more information on recent drinking water tests done in the Somerville Public Schools.

  • Comprehensive Food System Assessment

    (Coming Spring 2018)

  • 9-5-2-1-0 Campaign

    Shape Up Somerville, Somerville Public Schools, and Cambridge Health Alliance's campaign to promote balanced, healthy lives.

  • Farmers' Markets Near You

    Urban agriculture brings fresh and local food to your table.

  • Nibble Cooking Classes

    The Somerville Arts Council Explores Food & Culture in Union Square and beyond.

  • Click N' Cook

    Find recipes based on what you have in the house using Click ‘n Cook! Select the items you have to use, and this digital database will find recipes using those items.


Grab a Map and Get Outdoors

You don't need an expensive gym membership to stay fit in Somerville! Check out the maps below for a guide to some great exercise spots in the City:

More Ways to Stay Active and Have Fun

Student Internships Available

Shape Up Somerville offers project-based and self-directed internships. Browse our Student Internship Opportunities document to find out how you can get involved.


Mayor Curtatone Addresses the White House for the "Let's Move" Program


Shape Up Somerville Overview by Mayor Curtatone