People Can Lead Healthy Lives

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Partnership for community health efforts leverages national dollars, follows grassroots roadmap

The Jefferson County Department of Health established the Health Action Partnership in 2007 as a collaboration with community organizations to improve community health by putting into practice what citizens said they wanted, as expressed in Jefferson County’s Community Roadmap to Health.  The Community Foundation continues to be an anchor organization and funding partner in a variety of grants and initiatives, including:

  • Staff support and seed grants to leverage almost $14 million in national grants to HAP (multi-year grants awarded in 2010). This included $360,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for Healthy Kids Healthy Communities and more than $13 million in federal stimulus funding for Communities Putting Prevention to Work, an initiative to fight tobacco use and obesity.
  • Grants from the JCDH Public Health Fund at the Community Foundation. One example was a focused effort in 2009 in Eastern Birmingham and across Jefferson County.
  • Staff support, starting in 2008, to co-chair with the Birmingham YMCA the Pioneering Healthier Communities of YMCA of USA, designed to increase healthy eating and active living through local policy and environmental change. One success in 2009 was to rally  support for street paving guidelines that ease bicycle traffic.
  • Local partner for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Ladder to Leadership initiative, which selected 40 emerging health leaders in Jefferson County to receive valuable leadership development training.

Because of the many partners who are part of HAP, you can find a variety of ways to be part of this effort, from efforts to pass smoke-free ordinances to greenway planning. Contact Gus Heard-Hughes to find out more about our role in HAP.