– Provided as part of the annual State of Obesity: Better Policies for a Healthier America report and web site by Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, this interactive tool tracks the status of each state’s efforts on more than 20 polices aimed at preventing obesity and promoting health. The policies are grouped by the categories “Early Childhood,” “Schools,” and “Communities.”
– Valuable information about New Jersey’s communities is collected during the decennial census and related surveys. The Fund for New Jersey developed the Complete Count NJ web site as a resource to help identify Hard-to-Count areas throughout the state. Interactive maps as well as supplemental resources and news are available on the website.
– Atlantic City’s Lead A.C., 2018 A team of Atlantic City youth worked to improve access to healthy foods by partnering with local food banks and the Care AC coalition to create a better system for allocating food, developed the Feed AC app to promote distribution locations to Atlantic City residents.
Perth Amboy’s Emerging Leaders for a Healthier Community, 2018 This team of Perth Amboy youth worked to address street and traffic safety in their community. They partnered with Rutgers University to complete traffic safety audits and address walkability to local parks to determine the best routes and locations for the Raritan Bay Area YMCA mobile farmers’ market, also known as the “Veggie Van.” Traffic Safety and Walkability Audit
Secaucus Next Generation Community Leaders, 2018 and 2019
In partnership with the Secaucus Environmental Department’s Green Business Initiative, the school district and local businesses, the Secaucus Next Generation Community Leaders worked to raise awareness about environmental health. They worked to create a composting system, completed audits of community parks, shared recommendations with City Councilmembers about necessary changes that can improve residents’ access to parks and promote increased physical activity by park visitors and developed a series of public service announcements to engage residents in this work.
– While vibrant public spaces foster a healthy community, not all public spaces or the neighborhoods that surround them are created or maintained equitably. The Inclusive Healthy Places Framework, developed by the Gehl Institute with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, helps planners and policymakers identify the type of evidence needed to help make decisions and fund public space projects that promote individual and community health and well-being.
– All In: Data for Community Health has released the first episodes of its new podcast, which features conversations with local leaders who are collaborating with other sectors to share data that provides a more complete picture of community health needs. In each episode, community leaders discuss the challenges they faced, their secrets to success, and the lessons they learned along the way that can help other communities.
– The Network is the core of the National Library of Medicine’s (NLM) outreach program to reduce health disparities and improve health information literacy. Funded by NLM, through cooperative agreements, eight Regional Medical Libraries and five National Offices provide a variety of outreach services such as project funding, training, presentations, exhibits, and other types of public programs. The University of Pittsburgh Health Sciences Library System serves as the Regional Medical Library for the Middle Atlantic Region (MAR), which includes Delaware, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. The National Network of Libraries of Medicine – Middle Atlantic Region supports the growing trend of communities engaging libraries as health partners.
– A number of communities and advocates across the country are working to address housing as a barrier to health. The Eviction Lab at Princeton University has launched the first nationwide database of evictions, allowing users to find out how many evictions happen in a particular community. The database includes features to create custom maps, charts and reports that can inform and engage community stakeholders.
– The Greenlining Institute’s Mobility Equity Framework is a step-by-step guide to a more community-centered transportation planning process. The framework focuses on the mobility needs of communities by offering a method to assess and compare different transportation modes based on impacts, and including affected communities and residents in the decision-making process. This resource is intended for urban, suburban and rural communities.
– The Aspen Institute Dialogue on Public Libraries is a multi-stakeholder forum to explore and champion new thinking on U.S. public libraries, with the goal of fostering concrete actions to support and transform public libraries for a more diverse, mobile and connected society. Its web site serves to foster connections and collaborations, and share strategies among communities based on the Aspen Institute’s report “Rising to the Challenge: Re-Envisioning Public Libraries.”
– A growing number of communities in New Jersey and across the nation are working with and through libraries to better serve community residents by providing accessible, understandable health information that will lead to building healthier communities. New Jersey Health Initiatives partnered with Zachary Taylor, Med, CHES, Coordinator of Healthier Middlesex to highlight the untapped potential of public libraries as community assets. Access a recording of that webinar to learn about the history of this work in New Jersey, and identify resources for your community.
– Policy, Systems and Environmental change (PSE) strategies address the systems and structures of the communities in which we live, learn, work and play. In every community, aspects of daily life account for 70 percent of our health. Approaches to PSE change help stakeholders consider how their communities function, including how resources are allocated and how services are delivered, and the influence of those systems and structures on community health prior to the onset of illness.
These approaches help build healthier communities by supporting individual behavior change–what the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation refers to as “making the healthy choice the easy choice.” While New Jersey Health Initiatives (NJHI) does not adhere to one particular definition, the majority of the community coalitions that NJHI supports are working toward implementing policy, systems and environmental change strategies that will lead to long-term, sustainable community change.
View the webinar recording and access the slide deck of “PSE 101: Building Healthy Communities Through Policy, Systems and Environmental (PSE) Change” presented by ChangeLab Solutions in partnership with the Network for a Healthy California
The Georgia Health Policy Center offers a resource to support rural communities in its presentation “The Path from Program to Policy, Systems and Environmental Change: From Conceptual Model to Real Life Application.” View the presentation slides
– Across the state and the country, cross-sector partnerships are bringing more community voices and perspectives to the health conversation. Practical Playbook’s interactive Find a Partnership tool provides access to information about partnerships nationwide, including all 20 NJHI: Communities Moving to Action coalitions. Partnerships are searchable by state and/or topic, to help communities connect with each other at the local, state, regional and national level to affect meaningful and long-term community change.