MAYVILLE - Community leaders from across Chautauqua County met recently to start transforming local communities for the healthier. The group met as part of the start-up of the Chautauqua County Health Department's Community Transformation Grant: Small Communities (CTG) initiative.
Those who attended the kickoff meeting are members of a new multi-sector leadership team that will be working in partnership with the Chautauqua Health Action Team to assist and provide guidance to the Health Department and CTG program staff. These groups will be helping to implement a comprehensive plan to prevent chronic disease in early child care, school, and community settings within the geographic areas of the Jamestown, Dunkirk and Silver Creek central school districts.
"We are very excited to have school districts, municipalities, health and human service agencies, medical professionals, private-sector businesses, and elected officials as partners in this project," says Christine Schuyler,?director of health and human services for Chautauqua County. "We recognize the need to work across sectors in our communities to successfully address causes of obesity and other chronic disease and we are fortunate to have these resources to coordinate this effort. Together we can effect real positive change."
Pictured, from left, are Breeanne Agett, Toni DeAngelo, Theresa Schrantz, Linda Finn, Kristen Kathman, Paula Troutman, Kurt Lindstrom, Virginia Carlberg, Vince Horrigan, Jennifer Irwin, Don McCord, Ann Abdella, Ben Drake, Gregory Szewczyk, Lindsay Ball, Kate Huber, Samantha Vanstrom, Katie Pawlak, David Reinhardt, Lisa Schmidtfrerick-Miller, Angela Swartzman and Christine Schuyler.
Chautauqua County is one of just three counties in New York state selected to receive the Community Transformation Grant: Small Communities funding. The New York State Department of Health was awarded the two-year grant by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to address risk factors including tobacco use, physical inactivity, and poor nutrition in Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Broome counties.
"This initiative is about creating or strengthening opportunities for children and adults who live, work, and attend school in the selected communities to live more active lifestyles, to eat better, and to avoid exposure to tobacco. It's really about making the healthier choices the easier choices," explains Breeanne Agett, Junior Planner for the Chautauqua County Health Department.
Mayor Kurt Lindstrom of Silver Creek is excited about being one of the communities involved. "I am thrilled to be a part of this terrific group. This is a proactive approach that will lead to healthier children in our communities resulting in healthier families. This project addresses genuine quality of life issues with the village government, school district and county health professionals taking an active role in the health of our residents," he said.