Fact Sheet

Innovation Strategy Projects: Achieving Healthier Weights in Canada's Communities

News Release: Harper Government Announces Funding for Ontario Project Promoting Healthier Weights

The Government of Canada, along with provinces, territories and community groups, is working to find more innovative ways to achieve healthier weights among Canadians

Through the Public Health Agency of Canada's Innovation Strategy, the Government of Canada funds projects to take action to reduce barriers to healthy weights by addressing underlying environmental, social, demographic and economic issues. The Innovation Strategy specifically places a focus on rural, remote, northern and underserved communities across Canada, and on children and youth, particularly those with low socio-economic status.

Innovation Strategy projects are funded in two phases. Phase I included development and early implementation of 37 projects, totaling over $7 million. Phase II builds upon the work of specific Phase I projects by providing funding for the full implementation and evaluation of them, as well as the sharing of knowledge and what is learned.

Innovative approaches to achieving healthier weights will be used in areas such as community engagement, health literacy and food security. These projects will include a focus on Aboriginal peoples, minority and vulnerable youth, young children, parents and families. The information gained will add to a broader understanding of how to achieve healthier weights and will be shared with communities and partners across Canada.

Achieving Healthier Weights

The following Phase II project was announced today in Toronto:

Launching Community Food Centres in Canada: Building Health and Equity through Food Programs in Low-Income Communities ($1,503,000)

Led by Community Food Centres Canada in Toronto, Ontario, this project aims to:

  • Identify and engage 15 low income communities, selected on the basis of local needs and demographics; and,
  • Develop comprehensive, locally-driven program plans in each community that will support healthy food access (e.g. drop-in meals), food skills (e.g. community gardens and cooking groups), and education and engagement (e.g. peer-support programs).

Project partners include: the Local Community Food Centre; The Table Community Food Centre; The Stop Community Food Centre; NorWest Co-op Community Health; Dartmouth Family Centre; CRC at 40 Oaks; Ryerson University; The University of Guelph; The Sprott Foundation; The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation; Green Shield Canada Foundation; BMO Financial Group; The George Cedric Metcalf Charitable Foundation; The Young Fund at the Hamilton Community Foundation; Ontario Trillium Foundation; Ontario Ministry of Health Promotion: Healthy Communities Fund; Atkinson Foundation; Joannah and Brian Lawson; Scott and Leigh Lamacraft; Jon and Nancy Love; Ultima Foods; Le Creuset Canada; Bernardin Ltd.; and up to 15 new Community Food Centres during the life of this project.

For more information, contact the Public Health Agency of Canada, Centre for Health Promotion, Innovation Strategy: IS.Information@phac-aspc.gc.ca.

The Public Health Agency of Canada is funding these initiatives under its Innovation Strategy program. The Innovation Strategy (IS) links evidence and action to address the underlying causes of complex population health issues in diverse communities across Canada by supporting and rigorously evaluating innovative and evidence-based population health interventions.

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