Sharing tips to practice wellness at work; highlighting local health care professionals who have found innovative ways to improve community health; supporting a small, rural elementary school to run a salad bar program … these are just a few of the great topics that I get to deal with every day, thanks to my position at Northern Health (NH), the regional health authority for the top two-thirds of British Columbia.
These are also just a sample of some of the great ways northern BC community members are supported in their efforts to live a healthy life, thanks to NH. When people think about healthcare, the first things that usually pop into their head is hospital facilities, doctors, and nurses. Of course, that’s an important part of healthcare, but NH is more than that.
Living a healthy northern lifestyle
Living a northern or rural lifestyle can be daunting for some, as they may assume it’ll come with additional challenges, but luckily NH understands this and responds to the needs of our community members with a variety of supports and services, all designed with northerners in mind.
I’m proud to hold a position at NH that is all about promoting health and wellness in order to prevent chronic disease and injury. I’m proud to work for an organization that places such importance on creating healthy people in healthy communities (it’s one of our strategic priorities, in fact).
A major goal of my team is to share health and wellness stories (from staff and northern BC residents) in order to hopefully inspire others to incorporate new, healthy ideas into their lives. We have a lot of fun planning campaigns, delivering content, touring Spirit the Caribou (our mascot) around the north, and writing about the great things our staff are doing to promote health, all with the goal of making health a more accessible and attainable goal for all of northern BC.
Here are some examples of how northern BC residents can find support from Northern Health in their quest for a healthy lifestyle:
- Northern Health Matters blog: Our blog is a hub of our storytelling efforts, and all posts are written by passionate staff who want to share their knowledge with their community. The topics vary greatly, but include health tips for all residents, as well as information on services and programs available from NH. (You can find more of this on our NH Facebook page too!)
- Community Health Stars: We know that there are people in the north, NH staff and not, who are doing great things on their own to improve the health of their community – and we want to showcase their story! Nominations for community health stars are always open, and could be a great inspiration for the rest of the north. Personally, I have a hard time not tearing up over some of the nominations we get because they are sometimes so moving!
- IMAGINE grants: These community grants are an amazing opportunity to help get your community health project up and running. NH understands that health happens in community and we want to support the great ideas that are out there to improve health. Reading some of the stories about successful grants is one of my favourite things: you can find a map of all grant projects in the north on the IMAGINE website, and we’ve also shared many grant stories on our blog.