Activate Allen County is a public health initiative committed to promoting healthy eating, active living, and a tobacco-free lifestyle
Activate Allen County is a locally funded initiative that focuses on educating and inspiring the people in our community to make healthy choices. We also work to educate people about the relationship between policy, environment, and community design and that relates to their health and well-being. Part of that means making changes that remove barriers and increase access to healthy behavior.
At Activate Allen County, we believe everyone should have access to healthy foods and the opportunity for physical activity in places that they live, work, worship, learn and play.
Our strategies include:
- Increasing smoke-free environments and the availability of tobacco cessation services
- Enhancing primary care screening and treatment of tobacco use
- Providing evidence-based education to the community
- Promotion of breastfeeding
- Increasing healthy food options and access to fresh fruit and vegetables in food deserts
- Increasing physical activity among school children
- Increasing the effectiveness of wellness policies in schools, increasing access to pre-diabetes interventions
- Improving access to non-motorized transportation options.
Founded in 2012, our collaboration has taken on new directions as we’ve grown
When members of the Lima/Allen County community came together in 2012 and formed the collaborative that became known as Activate Allen County, there was really no way to foresee the form and direction that it would take.
Now, as we find ourselves in the midst of a successful community collaboration, we are hopeful to turn into a sustainable group that continues to work in the community to make improvement in the lives of our citizens.
Because of our community collaboration, two large community-based grants from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were awarded to the Lima Family YMCA. These drove much of the early work we completed.
The first of these grants was a Small Community Transformation Grant and the second was a Partnerships to Improve Community Health grant. Much of the early work focused on sustainable policy and environmental changes around tobacco-free living, healthy eating, and active living. These grants came to an end in October of 2017.
Currently, Activate Allen County is locally funded and houses two full-time staff to continue much of the work that was started under federal funding. However, this local funding has also opened the doors for new work and projects to form based on specific community needs. One main piece of work is Allen County’s Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP) that details many of the goals and objectives that the county, including Activate Allen County, that we have set out to accomplish in the next couple of years.