On January 25th, HEALTHIER TOGETHER was invited to participate in a community impact forum in Washington Park, IL along side Mount Calvary Church of God in Christ (COGIC) and House of Prayer to All Nations (HOPTAN). Pastor Charles Rogers of Mount Calvary COGIC and Pastor Anthony Pettiford of HOPTAN, chair and co-chair of HEALTHIER TOGETHER’s Community Safety Work Group, organized this event in hopes of building strong relationships between the community, the local churches, and additional resources like AgeSmart Community Resources, East Side Aligned, East Side Health District, HealthVisions, Make Health Happen, Washington Park Municipal Government, and others.
The message was geared towards community health and safety, showing why there is a need for everyone to play a part in helping to improve health and quality of life in Washington Park, and other St. Clair County and metro east communities.
The population's health is determined not only by our medical and health care, but it's also driven by socioeconomic factors. To achieve a healthier community, we also have to address these factors that include items like education, employment, community safety, infrastructure, environment, and spiritual wellness. By addressing the health of our communities and the county as a whole, we will be able to see changes in all areas that will benefit everyone.
Public Discussion with Pastor Rogers and Pastor Pettiford
"In the United States, healthcare organizations impact only 20% of a population’s health. The remaining 80% of our health is determined by social, behavioral, economic and environmental factors that can best be impacted by local schools, churches, business, community centers and government."
—Mark Peters, Executive Director of HEALTHIER TOGETHER
Discussion on Contributing Factors
The forum gave local residents a chance to voice their concerns, opinions, and needs surrounding the current state of the community. Some of the major takeaways were:
- The safety of the elderly community members
- Access to healthy foods
- Fair prices for goods and services
- Access to infrastructure services such as public transit and internet service.
- Creating a safe, positive environment for children within the community to learn and be successful.
The forum also allowed for networking and information sharing about resources that are available to the community. Partnering agencies and other members in attendance were stepping up to offer ideas and solutions about senior care, transportation, and other local advocacy groups.
"For more information on how to get involved, contact us at email@example.com."
The HEALTHIER TOGETHER movement is 100% volunteer driven to support the collective impact work of over 45 organizations in St. Clair County who are working together to address improvements in Community Safety, Chronic Disease Prevention, Education, Maternal & Child Health, Substance Use Disorder, and Suicide Awareness & Prevention. If you are interested in learning more about these six work groups who are in need of support and volunteers for events similar to this one, you will find more information regarding their activities on the HEALTHIER TOGETHER website. Make sure to stop by and see what we're all about.
The Community Safety workgroup’s partnering agencies.