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pearl e rhodes
Student gardeners at the Pearl Rhodes school in Leyden.

Mass in Motion is a statewide movement that  promotes opportunities for healthy eating and active living in the places people live, learn, work and play.  Franklin County/North Quabbin’s  Mass in Motion initiative is connected with  the Communities That Care Coalition, which focuses on outcomes in youth health, including physical activity and nutrition.  Our Mass in Motion initiative was one of four communities in the Commonwealth selected for expanded funding to address chronic disease prevention in the whole population from 2015-2018.

In our early days we created a case study and inventory of best practices for School Nutrition and Physical Activity.  We continue to collaborate with School Nutrition efforts, and in 2017-2018 we worked with a School Nutrition Technical Assistance Consultant to lift up district-specific best practices and make suggestions for regional improvements which are now the basis for further planning and implementation.

In addition to working closely with school districts, we support the development of Complete Streets policies in our municipalities, and help ensure that all residents can have a voice in Complete Streets Prioritization Planning processes.

We also encourage Age-friendly Communities planning processes through a pilot in Deerfield, and expanding SNAP access in the more remote parts of our region.

The Mass in Motion Advisory Committee monitors preventable chronic disease rates in our region, plans strategies to address them, and tracks progress, all in coordination with the work of Communities That Care and the hospital community health assessment processes. It meets quarterly. Click here to see our infographics on the factors affecting health in our region.

The Committee’s priorities include supporting and promoting:

  • Mapping areas of highest need in Franklin/North Quabbin
  • Farm to Institution relationship building
  • Community Use of public spaces
  • Complete Streets—including municipal and regional policy
  • Increasing activity options or older adults
  • Workplace Wellness
  • Walking routes for recreation and transportation
  • Increasing access to healthy foods in retail establishments
  • Transportation mode shift goals, which encourage people to increase cycling, walking and public transportation and reduce individual motor vehicles where possible.
  • Diabetes Prevention and lifestyle change programs

Members of the Committee include:

Kickoff of the Mass in Motion Healthy Hospital Food Project at Baystate Franklin Medical Center
Kickoff of the Mass in Motion Healthy Hospital Food Project at Baystate Franklin Medical Center

Staff contacts:

  • Rachel Stoler, Community Health Program Manager, co-coordinator of Partnership for Youth

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