Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department (TPCHD) officials announced Monday six groups will receive grants totaling $60,000 as part of the organization’s 2015 Walkability Grant Program.
In September, the Tacoma Daily Index reported the City of Tacoma applied for a $10,000 grant to conduct door-to-door canvassing surveys and host organized community meetings to gather information about transportation habits in Tacoma’s Hilltop and Lincoln District neighborhoods, as well as plan events that encourage pedestrians to use local streets for recreation and active transportation (see “$10K grant could boost Hilltop, Lincoln District walkability programs,” Tacoma Daily Index, Sept. 28, 2015).
Last month, a TPCHD spokesperson told the Tacoma Daily Index grant recipients would be announced in November (again, see “$10K grant could boost Hilltop, Lincoln District walkability programs,” Tacoma Daily Index, Sept. 28, 2015).
TPCHD’s Walkability Grant Program aims to improve walkability, health equity, and engagement in Pierce County communities in order to increase physical activity and prevent chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and hearth disease. The money comes from a Washington State Department of Health chronic disease prevention grant that promotes activities that lead to better health.
According to a press release issued Monday morning by TPCHD, the following organizations will each receive $10,000 grants:
- Pierce Conservation District | Start walking groups, increased signage to promote walking in Salishan, Swan Creek and Food Forest areas;
- City of Tacoma/Healthy Homes, Healthy Neighborhoods | Start walking groups in Hilltop and Lincoln neighborhoods;
- Foundation for Healthy Generations/Salishan Community Health Advocates program | Start walking groups in the Salishan neighborhood;
- Asia Pacific Cultural Center | Start walking groups and walkathons in the South Tacoma neighborhood;
- Habitat for Humanity | Start walking groups in the Midland neighborhood;
- Know Your Ropes | Start walking groups, painted pathways and maps to increase physical activity in Hilltop.
TPCHD officials noted the community organizations that receive the grants will work with their neighbors between now and September 2016 to conduct assessments and develop plans to increase walkability in their neighborhoods.
“Walking is a form of exercise that most everyone can do, but sometimes lack of safe areas for walking gets in the way,” said TPCHD Physical Activity, Nutrition and Tobacco program manager Miae Aramori. “We want to help organizations figure out how they can overcome the barriers to walking in their communities, so more people can get moving. When the level of physical activity goes up, rates of chronic disease eventually goes down.”