Community Centered Prevention

Goal

By 2025, increase by 25 percent the number of financially needy North Carolinians who are free of preventable disease and maintain a healthy weight.

The Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust is supporting program, policy and advocacy work designed to marry efforts that increase physical activity with those that support healthier eating habits among financially disadvantaged North Carolinians, especially those living in rural areas.

To address disparities in health care and related outcomes, a comprehensive review of risk factors, including poor nutrition and physical inactivity and the associated chronic conditions of asthma, diabetes, and obesity, as well as indicators such as stress is critical. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), poor nutrition and physical inactivity are the second and third leading causes of preventable deaths in the United States. Community-centered prevention is designed to address environmental obstacles to healthy diet and physical activity, as well as any unique local factors contributing to the overall health of North Carolina’s communities.

The Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) reports that 60 percent of financially disadvantaged North Carolinians participated in some physical activity in the past month, although according to the CDC less than half of all adults meet the agency’s guidelines for physical activity. Only 22 percent of low-income North Carolinians eat a healthy diet, per BRFSS.

A healthy diet and active lifestyle help adults and children reduce their risks for many health conditions, including obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, Type 2 Diabetes, oral disease, and some cancers, among others.

To reduce disparities in health and prevention for economically disadvantaged North Carolinians, the Trust is working with local, regional, statewide, and national partners to bolster community providers and organizations to improve access to physical activity and support healthier diets.

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Closing The Gap

COMPREHENSIVE PREVENTION IN A COMMUNITY SETTING

Efforts to improve health in a setting such as a school, child care facility, faith-based organization, public space or worksite.

Investments in Action

  • Hyde County Health Department  Multiple agencies working together on community-wide active and healthy living programs to enhance opportunities for physical activity for school children, local employees, and Latino families.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY

Improving the built environment to promote walkable, bikeable communities and providing greater access to parks, playgrounds, fields, trails, and other places to be active.

Investments in Action

  • Down-East Partnership for Children  Transformation of school playgrounds into natural outdoor learning spaces to encourage physical activity.

ACCESS TO HEALTHY FOODS

Programs, policies, and strategies to improve healthy food access in schools and communities.

Investments in Action

  • Rural Advancement Foundation International – USA  Improving access to healthy foods for SNAP recipients in 10 Tier 1 counties through education, outreach activities, and technical support.