More than 124,000 students in six school districts are benefitting from improved school food and physical activity, 49 stores in low-income neighborhoods are offering healthier options like fruits and vegetables, and 13,000 affordable housing units are now smoke-free – all as a result of a two-year King County partnership with cities, schools, and organizations to create healthier communities.
In March 2010 as part of Communities Putting Prevention to Work, more than 50 local organizations set out to improve the health of King County through an ambitious two-year federal stimulus project aimed at addressing the leading causes of death in our region—obesity and tobacco use.
“We've made long-term community changes that allow people to be more active and eat better,” said Dr. David Fleming, Director and Health Officer for Public Health - Seattle & King County. "At the same time, we have expanded the places where children and families can breathe smokefree air."
Among the accomplishments:
- More than 65,000 students in three school districts (Seattle, Tukwila and Auburn) are benefitting from improved physical activity curricula. Also, students at 18 schools from six school districts (Auburn, Highline, Kent, Renton, Tukwila and Seattle) will have active and safe ways to get to school through “Safe Routes to School” programs.
- Over 13,000 affordable housing units are now smoke-free (surpassing the goal by more than 100%).
- 6,500 more seniors and 600 more children at over 50 senior congregate meal sites and child care programs now have access to locally grown fruits and vegetables.
- More than 9,000 people at six Seattle African American churches, part of Moving Together in Faith & Health, are benefitting from wellness policies for healthy food options, including reducing access to unhealthy sugary drinks.
For the complete list of activities and accomplishments, view successes
Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) implements environmental changes to make healthy living easier where people live, learn, work, play and pray. The focus is on south King County and south Seattle, where residents are more likely to be obese or smoke, compared to people in more well-off neighborhoods. The work by King County and partner organizations has met and in many cases exceeded expectations, and some activities will continue through September.
Public Health allocated most of the CPPW dollars to more than 55 external partners such as school districts, community-based organizations, local governments and media organizations. The projects addressed obesity and tobacco prevention, two of the leading contributors to premature illness, death and health care costs in the United States and locally.