In line with our place-based approach toward healthier communities, work has commenced with the South West Hospital and Health Service (HHS) Healthy Communities Team to explore a range of options to create a healthier South West Region.
The first gathering of the South West Nutrition Collaborative late last year brought partners together to share information, strengthen connections and explore opportunities for local solutions between the HHS and Health and Wellbeing Queensland’s programs and partners with shared interests in food security and nutrition.
Led by South West HHS, those attending included colleagues from Health and Wellbeing Queensland, Western Queensland Primary Health Network, Maranoa Regional Council, and local service providers.
Colleagues were given an overview of the current state of nutrition in the region using results from the 2020 Chief Health Officer Report and other important sources of intelligence.
Information was shared on a range of local and state-wide initiatives to encourage and support healthy eating. These included the Jamie’s Ministry of Food healthy lifestyle programs, QCWA Country Kitchens, and Deadly Choices program for First Nations people. Local community gardens and a capacity building program developed to reduce reliance on emergency food relief service were also discussed.
Partners reflected on the important aspects of these programs, what was missing locally and other ways to support healthier food options in the community. By the end of the gathering, partners were able to recognise common goals and the valuable roles each played in influencing nutrition related health outcomes within the region across a range of settings. Priorities for moving forward included greater collaboration and building networks. Findings from a short survey will inform next steps and future actions for this exciting initiative.
Learn more about the South West Hospital and Health Service (HHS) Healthy Communities Initiative.