Louisville Recognized in Journey Toward Health for All

Health for all is the focus of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Culture of Health Prize.  This honor, the Foundation’s highest national honor, is granted annually to select communities across the country to honor and elevate those who are making great strides toward better health.  And, with health defined as all elements that contribute to a person’s best life, communities are measured on everything from affordable housing, education, physical wellbeing, access to healthcare and more.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is the country’s largest philanthropy focused on health.  Widely known for their leadership and innovation, it is their mission to enable everyone in America to live longer, healthier lives.  The process of pursuing the Culture of Health Prize was one that began well over a year ago and involved more than 200 local organizations and individuals across the multi-stage selection process.  Chosen from nearly 200 communities across the country, Louisville joins these 2016 RWJF Culture of Health Prize winning communities:  24:1 Community, Missouri; Columbia Gorge Region, Oregon and Washington; Manchester, New Hampshire; Miami-Dade County, Florida; Santa Monica, California; and Shoalwater Bay Indian Tribe in Washington.

Our community was selected based on our four key factors. First, collaboration, data driven decision-making, and a shared commitment to health serve as an anchor efforts in Louisville. Second, Louisville was recognized for work to offer full economic opportunity for all residents through job training opportunities for youth and an effort to increase the number of residents with college degrees.  Third, our response to rising violence with an all-in prevention approach and a range of initiatives, including weekly neighborhood Peace Walks with residents and police sharing ideas on how to make the city safer.  Finally, artists being trained to help tackle challenging issues such as violence and racism and playing a pivotal role in job creation and science and technology education.  From community organizations, businesses, health systems, universities, and residents we are working alongside each other to put good health within everyone’s reach.

For the Prize application team, led by the Community Foundation of Louisville, Greater Louisville Project, IDEAS xLab, and KentuckyOne Health, pursuing this recognition offered an unparalleled opportunity to bolster support for existing efforts in our community and to provide access to a national platform of technical assistance and collaboration.  “Prize communities are lifted to inspire others across the nation.  What’s more, Louisville is now connected to a national network of leaders to fuel additional local progress,” states Trisha Finnegan, Community Foundation’s Vice President Mission & Impact.

The Louisville Culture of Health Prize application team invites those who participated in the application process and those who want to help carry the work forward to attend Louisville’s Culture of Health: Putting Good Health Within Everyone’s Reach, a free learning and celebration event on Monday, Nov. 7, 2-7 p.m. at the Muhammad Ali Center. For more information, and to register, visit http://cultureofhealth-lou.eventbrite.com.

RWJF COH Louisville August 25-28, 2016 "Walk with a Doc" activity put on by KentuckyOne Health in Shawnee Park. Dr. Jennifer Stiff (longer black pants, blonde hair, sunglasses on during walk) walking with participants. RWJF COH Louisville August 25-28, 2016 West Louisville Peace Walk with Louisville Metro Police Department Chief Steve Conrad and community leaders. 8/25/16. RWJF COH Louisville August 25-28, 2016 Office of Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods members together in downtown Louisville: Quaniqua Carthan (long braids, blue dress), Rashaad Abdur-Rahman, director (blue shirt), Mayor Greg Fischer (white shirt, tie), Yvette Gentry (pink dress), Brandyn Bailey (orange shirt). RWJF COH Louisville August 25-28, 2016 YouthBuild Louisville is an education, job training and leadership program that provides low-income young adults ages 18-24 opportunities to realize their potential as active community leaders and as part of an educated workforce for Louisville. These photos are from YBL mental toughness training, where the students do carpentry and work in the gardens. The young man in the maroon YouthBuild shirt (with hat) is Layfierre Mitchell, a YBL student who was showing the others around the garden and having them learn how to cut flowers for an arrangement.