BOWLING GREEN (Greg Stotelmyer) – There’s a message being sent to civic leaders across Kentucky that a healthy community is about much more than hospitals and clinics. Susan Zepeda, president and CEO of the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, says it’s also about where you work, education, transportation and food supply. Zepeda says Kentucky is seeing an “exciting marriage” between eating fresh and the local food movement. “It’s a win, win, win,” she says. “The food doesn’t travel so far, so it’s fresher, and crisper and full of those vitamins. We’re lifting up Kentucky’s small farms so they can have a stable livelihood and in the schools we’re introducing kids to fruits and vegetables their parents may not have had on their plates when they were growing up.”
“Building Healthy Places” is the theme of the Howard L. Bost Memorial Health Policy Forum the Foundation is offering free to civic leaders in late September in Bowling Green. Zepeda says building biking and walking paths, plus more sidewalks, are great ways to promote physical activity. She notes education and health also go hand in hand. “Education tends to line you up for good jobs,” she says. “That tends to line you up for good benefits and better health.” Zepeda says national experts will talk about everything from innovative work site wellness programs to land use planning that promotes a healthier community.
“So we’re hoping the civically-engaged leaders who come to this conference, if it’s something Kentucky hasn’t done 30 years ago, they’ll be inspired to do it today, and tomorrow and the next day so we create a healthy future,” says Zepeda.
Conference details are online at www.healthy-ky.org.