Click on the image above to enjoy the VCH Regional Forum photo gallery.
The Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) Regional Forum in February 2016 was an opportunity for healthy community leaders to celebrate and reflect how far they have come in their collective journey and to identify key steps for moving forward. The event hosted by the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority with facilitation by BC Healthy Communities Society on behalf of the PlanH program.
Deborah Baker from Squamish Council started the day by providing a welcome and acknowledgement of shared territory. Further welcome from Mayor Darrell Mussatto of the City of North Vancouver and Patty Daly, Chief Medical Health Officer set the stage for exploring local government and health authority partnerships.
How Far Have We Come?
Presentations by Dr. Mark Lysyshyn, Medical Health Officer and Claire Gram, Policy Consultant and Healthy Built Environment Lead at VCH provided an overview of the work that has been done by exploring compelling questions such as: ‘What determines health?, ‘What is a healthy community?’ and ‘How do you build healthy communities?’. Their focus was on upstream approaches that addressed health issues from the social determinants level.
“We are trying to narrow the gaps between those with resources and those without, ” explained Lysyshyn. Gram went deeper into the myriad of accomplishments achieved by Vancouver Coastal Health through their healthy communities initiative and collaboration agreements. She completed the overview with a quote from Andre Picard, ‘It’s not enough to have a $172-billion-a-year repair shop; we need to invest in creating healthy populations.’
“We are trying to narrow the gaps between those with resources and those without“— Dr. Lysyshyn, Medical Health Officer, VCH
The forum highlighted the successes to date of Healthy Community Partnerships throughout the Vancouver Coastal region with inspirational stories from staff and elected officials representing six diverse communities of different sizes and geographic locations. The speakers were organized into two panels.
Panelists was from the City of Vancouver, District of Squamish and City of Richmond shared practical tools for addressing key health and well-being challenges including a healthy city strategy, an OCP with a health lens and a city-wide wellness strategy.
The second panel brought people from the Sunshine Coast, Powell River and the North Shore together to discuss a range of action areas including trail-building, youth empowerment and food security initiatives.
Dialogue to Action
An afternoon of rotating table sessions provided an opportunity for small groups to learn about plans, policies, actions, and related to specific topics such as healthy built environments, early childhood development, municipal alcohol plans, active transportation and more. The day concluded with ideas for where this work needs to go next and how the leaders in the room can work together to grow impact.
- Building Healthy Communities in Vancouver Coastal Health
Dr. Mark Lysyshyn, Medical Health Officer & Claire Gram, Policy Consultant and Healthy Built Environment Lead
- Hardwired for Health: Squamish!
Mayor Patricia Heintzman, Counselor Susan Chapelle, and Planner Sarah McJannet, from the District of Squamish
- City of Richmond Community Wellness Strategy
- City of Vancouver – A Healthy City for All
Kerry Jang, Councillor, City of Vancouver + Mary Clare Zak, Managing Director of Social Policy and Projects, City of Vancouver, Keltie Craig, Social Planner
- Uphill Both Ways: the Path to a Healthy Gibsons
Councillor Jeremy Valeriote, Town of Gibsons
- Working together to create a healthier Powell River
Ray Boogaards, Director of Parks, Recreation and Culture, City of Powell River
- Growing the North Shore Food Charter: Putting Food Systems on the Agenda.
Councillor Linda Buchanan from the City of North Vancouver and Cristina Rucci who is a Social Planner with the District of North Vancouver
Resources Provided for Table Sessions
Partnership Models and Collective Impact Resources
- PlanH Working with Local Governments Action Guide
- Working in Partnership with Local Governments & Local Communities
Healthy Built Environment / Active Transportation Resources
- My Health My Community Survey – Community Atlas
- Health Impact Assessment Guide and Toolkit
- Healthy Built Environment Linkages Toolkit
Municipal Alcohol Policy Resources
- An Local Government Guide to Creating Municipal Alcohol Policy
- Warning Signage information kit for BC Local Government
Food systems/Healthy Eating Resources:
- Municipal Food Policy Entrepreneurs
- Resource Catalogue
- Healthy Eating and Food Security Action Guide
- HBE Linkages – a Toolkit for Design, Planning, Health
Social Connectedness Resources
- VCH Social Cohesion Policy Primer for Rural Local Governments
- VCH Social Cohesion Policy Primer for Urban Local Governments
- The City of Vancouver Healthy City Strategy and Action Plan
Social Media Story
Get an overview of the day through this social media round up in Storify.
Check out the visual notes from the day:
Photos by: Lydia Nagai, graphic facilitation provided by BC Healthy Communities on behalf of the PlanH program