Fighting Obesity One Community at a Time

As the fight against childhood obesity intensifies, Seven Generations Ahead has been working with the Illinois State Alliance of YMCAs to develop better ways to measure and compare the effectiveness of a key program: Pioneering Healthier Communities (PHC). PHC was developed by the YMCA of the USA and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to work on the community and county levels to increase healthy eating and physical activity through policy, systems and built environment changes. There are more than 30 Pioneering Healthier Communities initiatives administered by YMCA chapters across Illinois and another 100 across the country. SGA has been leading a committee to develop core success indicators that will allow for "apples to apples" comparisons across projects. Success indicators could include Body-Mass Index, bike lane miles and the percent of children who walk to school, and ultimately will help PHC programs communicate progress against goals and drive local policy, strategy and budget decisions.