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National Health Observances


National Health Observances
National Health Observances (NHOs) are special days, weeks, or months dedicated to raising awareness about important health topics.


September is Fruits & Veggies – More Matters® Month
Fruits & Veggies—More Matters® Month is a time to promote the health benefits of eating a healthy, balanced diet that includes lots of fruits and vegetables. Encouraging community members to eat more fruits and veggies—and doing your part to make them easier to access—can make a difference when it comes to the health of your community.

National Farmers Market Week is August 6-12, 2017
National Farmers Market Week (NFMW) is recognized on the calendar of National Health Observances. NFMW is an annual celebration sponsored by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) that highlights the important role farmers’ markets play in the nation’s food system. This packet provides information about farmers’ markets as they relate to community health as well as ways that you can get involved in promoting NFMW and/or events happening at markets in your community.

July is National Parks and Recreation Month
National Park and Recreation Month is a time to promote the benefits of healthy, vibrant communities. It is a time to recognize the importance of parks and recreation in establishing and maintaining quality of life and in contributing to the physical, economic, and environmental well-being of communities. Celebrating National Park and Recreation Month is a great way to spend more time outdoors in parks which were created to give everyone a place to exercise, socialize, and enjoy nature – which improves overall health.

June is Great Outdoors Month
Celebrate the natural wonder and outdoor spirit of America by getting outside during Great Outdoors Month®.  Once you come outside, you’ll never want to go back inside.

May 31 is World No Tobacco Day
Every year, on 31 May, WHO and partners mark World No Tobacco Day (WNTD), highlighting the health risks associated with tobacco use and advocating for effective policies to reduce tobacco consumption.

May is American Stroke Month
In the United States, someone has a stroke every 40 seconds. Don’t stand idly by as this menacing disease claims the lives of our loved ones and independence. Join the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association and Stroke Heroes around the nation in the effort to put an end to stroke.

Every Kid Healthy Week is April 25-29, 2016
Every Kid Healthy Week (EKHW) is an annual observance created to celebrate school health and wellness achievements.  Observed the last week of April each year, this special week shines a spotlight on the great efforts our school partners are doing to improve the health and wellness of their students and the link between nutrition, physical activity and learning – because healthy kids learn better!

National Public Health Week is April 3-9, 2017
National Public Health Week (NPHW) is a time to promote the benefits of healthy, vibrant communities.  NPHW shines a spotlight on public health – highlighting how far we have come as well as acknowledging how much more we need to do to make healthy living easier where people live, learn, work, and play.

March is National Nutrition Month®
National Nutrition Month® is a time to promote the benefits of eating a healthy, balanced diet. As you work to make healthy living easier where people live, learn, work, and play, nutrition is an important area to focus on. Helping community members access healthy foods and encouraging them to make small changes to their daily routines can make a big difference for the overall health of the community.

February is American Heart Month
American Heart Month is a great way to remind Americans to focus on their hearts and encourage them to get their families, friends and communities involved. Together, we can build a culture of health where making the healthy choice is the easy choice.

The Healthy Eating & Active Living for the Holidays communications packet provides social media tips and tricks for engaging community members and partners in healthy holiday activities.

Walk to School Day is October 5, 2016
Organized by the Partnership for a Walkable America, Walk to School Day in the USA began in 1997 as a one-day event aimed at building awareness for the need for walkable communities. The event became international in 2000 when the USA, UK and CA all celebrated together on the first Wednesday of October. Currently, the international celebration includes 40 countries.


Additional Resources for National Health Observances

National Health-related and Other Observances – 2016
This is a listing of select health-related and other observances for 2016. These observances may provide earned media opportunities. Visit Healthfinder.gov for a listing of fo National Health Observances, tips for planning a health observance, and more.

Web badges
Example web badges that you can use to promote National Health Observances on websites, blogs and social media

Hashtag analytics
Track your hashtag and gain valuable social media insights. Two options include:

When is the best time to Tweet?
Imagine removing all guesswork when you schedule your tweets, knowing the best times to experiment with tweeting for maximum clicks and maximum engagement. As someone who shares frequently to social media, this info would be fantastic to have! We’re always eager to dig up new research into social media best practices—things like length and frequency and timing. More…

52 Weeks of Tweets 2016
Example tweets written for specific health observances and times of year.


Mark Your Calendars: 12 Reasons to Tap Into the Power of Health Observances
This webinar will explore the value of leveraging health observances in your communication efforts and review health observances for the coming year. Participants will also hear others are planning to integrate health observances into 2016 communication activities.

View slides.

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