Building off the successes of existing master plans and community outreach initiatives, Jackson County Healthy Communities Coalition aims to expand its efforts to reshape policies, systems and spaces to encourage healthy behavior like walking and biking in rural Jackson County.
Success story: October 2016 Fact sheet: April 2015
The Jackson County Healthy Communities Coalition celebrated their Plan4Health successes by sharing their lessons learned in a rural planning workshop. The workshop was designed to increase the capacity of rural communities to make viable environmental changes in their communities to improve access to healthy foods and physical activity for their residents. Professional planners from the City of Carbondale shared their expertise and other resources with community leaders in rural areas who do not have planning professionals on staff. To conclude the workshop, the planners highlighted basic planning principles as they led a walk along a new multi-use path in downtown Carbondale ending at the historical train depot.
The workshop evaluation revealed that 95% of participants left with a better understanding of planning principles, were inspired to make changes that influence the health of their residents, and had the tools they needed to make these changes. Additionally, the workshop created a forum through which people representing both planning and public health in rural communities can connect and ultimately compliment each other’s work in their respective communities.
As an added bonus, 11 rural communities received a new bike rack to jump start their efforts to utilize small built environment changes to improve health in their rural communities. One happy participant received a commercial grade outdoor bench to be used as an enhancement for the changes being made in their built environment.
These resources included the Planning Playbook for Rural Communities, as well as a Worksite Wellness Starter Kit.
Thank you for your interest in the inaugural Bicycle Scavenger Hunt in Jackson County! Explore historical and unique sites in the county by riding your bicycle to the sites listed on the flyer below. You can register to win a fabulous prize by submitting photos (selfies with your bicycle at any of the listed sites) through the Facebook event posted on the Bike Friendly Carbondale page. Simply participate in the event and post photos in the comment section. The more sites you visit and photos you post, the more chances you have to win. You could win a $50 gift card to a local bike shop or one of a number of smaller bicycle-related prizes. Grab some friends and hit the road! You’ll have fun as you explore Jackson County while getting active during May, National Bike Month!
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These youth have limited access to outdoor physical activity, and even less access to this unique experience. Watch what happens when planning and public health came together through community partnerships to bring a synthetic skating rink to town! See more from this event in the slideshow below!
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Jackson County Health Department
City of Carbondale
Keep Carbondale Beautiful
Southern Illinois Healthcare – Community Affairs
Shawnee Health Services & Development Corporation
SIU School of Medicine
SIU Center for Rural Health & Social Service Development
Murphysboro Chamber of Commerce
Carbondale Chamber of Commerce
Carbondale Park District