Healthy Communities Initiative
Healthy Communities is a five-year community-based initiative with the goal of building a culture of cooperation that changes a community’s wellbeing. The goal is that communities learn to work smarter and more effectively in managing local challenges.
Programming will demonstrate how a comprehensive approach to learning and experiencing smart economic and healthful life practices will lead over time to positive change in a community’s life.
The initiative calls for a working partnership of local organizations and institutions - school, healthcare provider, social agency - and community members willing to commit to and take responsibility for producing their desired changes.
The initiative’s success will be determined by participants’
- recognition that the only way to make change possible is to acknowledge the need, identify the necessary steps to make improvements and commit to act on those learnings;
- agreement to take on the mission as they define it as their own;
- understanding of their respective roles and responsibilities to the whole;
- determination to uphold commitments made to the work and to each other.
- An experiential participative planning process involving all the interested parties that informs and shapes the work going forward.
- A multi-dimensional course curriculum focused on current community issues and health practices.
- Academic and experiential learning in the areas of food, health, leadership and consumer best practices.
- Startup of a school- and community-operated culinary enterprise.
- A school-based community garden operated by community members.
- Extensive outreach to parents and community members through an interactive program of group cooking and healthful living experiences.
- Workshops in leadership and group work.
- A research component to measure health and life-style changes and evaluate program effectiveness.