Transforming Communities Initiative is a partnership between Saint Alphonsus Medical Center and United Way of Treasure Valley to address local social determinants of health through a policy, systems, and environmental change lens in the Treasure Valley. We fight to remove barriers to health equity through improvements to our wellness landscape by creating opportunities of increased health accessibility and environmental improvements to the places where we live, learn, play and work in the Treasure Valley.
Promise Partnerships is our community health initiative to support wellness. We work to make the “healthy choice the easy choice” with health-centric goals like: complete streets to promote safety and “active transportation,” improving wellness practices in school/childcare settings, smoking prevention by raising the purchasing age of tobacco products to 21 and a breastfeeding policy to protect a mother’s right to breastfeed her child. We promote the community school strategy to increase resources and mobilize neighborhoods around schools to support healthy kids and families by removing barriers and creating a built environment where kids can thrive as they grow and learn.
Treasure Valley initiatives
- School Wellness - Implementation and understanding of school policies related to healthy foods and physical activity.
- Tobacco 21 - A statewide policy to increase the purchase age of tobacco products from 18 to 21
- Breastfeeding - A statewide policy to project a mother’s right to breastfeed her child in any locations that she and her child have the right to be.
- Complete streets - Promotion of “active transportation” via infrastructure that focuses on walkability, bikeability and safety as people integrate physical activity into daily life.
- Childcare Nutrition Standards - Assisting with education and training for childcare providers to set food and beverage standards.
Treasure Valley Partners
- Saint Alphonsus Medical Group
- United Way of Treasure Valley
- Boise State University
- Southwest District Health
- Idaho Moms for Nursing in Public
- Vitruvian Planning
- Boise School District
- Caldwell School District
- City of Boise
- City of Caldwell
- Tobacco 21
- Zions Bank
- Gardner Company
- St. Luke’s Health System
In 2016, Idaho was the third fastest growing state in the nation. This growth has occurred mainly in urban areas, like the Treasure Valley, which is composed of Ada, Canyon and Gem Counties for a total population of 633,153 people. This number represents nearly 40% of Idaho’s total population.
The Treasure Valley lives up to its name as a treasure chest of resources and opportunities, when assessed, people in Idaho consider their well-being to be quite good as they report enjoying where they live. At fourth out of 50 states, Idaho’s ranking on “community” is among the top in the country. Though people enjoy living in the Treasure Valley, and it is a region rich in opportunities, offering a lifestyle many enjoy, along with a great outdoor haven to enthusiasts that take advantage of this recreation type, as a whole, we are lacking in physical health and well-being, with more than half of Treasure Valley residents not at a healthy weight.
We are aware of barriers to accessing healthy foods because of food deserts, childhood poverty rates increasing, community members struggling to make ends meet as 32% of the Treasure Valley falls into a limited income/poverty level status. These social and physical issues of health disparity, obesity rates, childhood poverty on the rise, and accessibility to mental and physical wellness resources show we have important work ahead of us.
We may have a long way to go, but with the collaboration of many local partners and the support of the TCI grant we are making strides every day to help our Treasure Valley community thrive as a healthy place to live, work and play for all.
About Transforming Communities Initiative (TCI)
TCI was launched to advance community partnerships that focus on improving the health and well-being in communities served by the Ministries of Trinity Health. Serving diverse communities that include more than 30 million people across 22 states, Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic health care delivery systems in the nation and believes efforts to eradicate the root causes of poor health must expand beyond the walls of their facilities in order to transform the communities they serve into healthier places.
TCI is a flexible capital grant and technical assistance initiative that supports innovative solutions to reduce tobacco use and childhood obesity, as well as address social determinants of health.
Check our November 27th, 2017 newsletter here.