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LiveWell Douglas County leaders on Thursday announced ambitious plans to accelerate the coalition's growth including efforts to establish partnerships with community organizations to support hiring its first executive director.
"LiveWell Douglas County has a strong base of engaged community stakeholders, as well as communications, planning, and data support from the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department and K-State Research and Extension – Douglas County," according to a statement from the 2018-19 LiveWell executive team Chair Jeff Severin, Chair-Elect Christina Holt and Past Chair Elizabeth Keever. "We would like to seize the opportunity to accelerate the growth of local efforts by providing staff support for institutional memory and continuity, grant writing, communications, and to strengthen community engagement by hiring an Executive Director."
The staff position would further leverage the coalition’s in-kind donations of time and support from community members and allow for dedicated time for securing additional support and resources to expand LiveWell's efforts in Douglas County, the leaders said. The decision to move forward grew out of conversations and feedback gathered from more than fifty community and work group members during LiveWell's February retreat.
Established in 2008, LiveWell Douglas County is a cross-sectoral community coalition that works to improve the health and well-being of residents of Lawrence and Douglas County. Since 2013, LiveWell has served as the primary convener of the Douglas County Community Health Plan's efforts to improve nutrition, food security, physical activity and a healthy-built environment for all county residents.
"This will strengthen our ability to serve as the cross-sectoral community collaboration that can grow our competitiveness for funding from state, federal, and private foundation sources," according to the executive team's statement.
You can view more information about the executive team's plans and case statement and its partner and grant support plan. Anyone interested in assisting with these efforts or providing ideas on outreach for the executive team can email Christina Holt at email@example.com.
LiveWell Douglas County's achievements since its inception include the founding of WorkWell Lawrence and Lawrence Complete Streets, establishment of marathon clubs at local schools, establishment and growth of summer food programs across Douglas County, building trails at Eudora Elementary School, establishment and growth of Double Up Food Bucks, introduction of FuelGood to bring healthy foods and beverage options to public spaces, increased food recovery and redistribution efforts, and creation of the Lawrence Loop.
The executive teams said LiveWell will remain focused on implementing policy, system and environmental changes for health and well-being for all Douglas County reisdents. Goals LiveWell work groups are addressing include: