Why should a community get involved?
British Columbians, as whole, live healthier lifestyles than other Canadians – however, many still consume too many unhealthy foods and beverages and get little physical activity. This contributes to the development of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes.
How can our community get involved?
While local government policies can play a pivotal role in promoting the health of communities, local government can't create healthier communities alone. It takes the combined effort of everyone, including local businesses, volunteers, organizations, schools, and health services. Individuals can get involved and provide input through local community groups and public meetings. Non-profit organizations and other community groups, local business leaders, etc. can contribute and share their expertise with their municipalities to develop local priorities and solutions.
What are some examples of a healthy community project?
There are numerous possibilities. These could include:
- supporting physical activity challenges,
- leading active living initiatives to promote healthy weights,
- developing healthy food policies for schools, recreation centres, seniors' centres, organized sport settings, health care facilities, post-secondary and other educational facilities,
- promoting public education and bylaws prohibiting tobacco smoking and vapour product use in and around public places and spaces, and
- designing common areas, meeting places and open spaces in public places to create safe opportunities for socializing among residents.
- building a culture of moderation for alcohol use to reduce risky alcohol use and underage drinking
Each community is different. What's needed and what works may be different in the North compared with the Kootenays. Individual communities work with their community partners to develop local solutions.