Where we live can have a substantial impact on our prospects for long-term health. We have a greater chance of being healthy when we are surrounded by healthy foods, safe places to be active, and social networks to strengthen and support us.
Kaiser Permanente believes in the power of investing in healthy places and neighborhoods. We work collectively with public and private organizations to create more active, sustainable and socially cohesive communities.
Building healthy neighborhoods requires both on-the-ground efforts to change the physical and social environment as well as efforts to advocate for public policies that support health at every turn.
Kaiser Permanente believes in doing both. We work with residents, community and municipal leaders, and other health organizations to hear their needs and their vision and translate that into structural changes in communities — bicycle and walking paths, the availability of fresh produce markets, community centers, affordable housing solutions, and workplace improvements. And we work with coalitions across many different sectors to develop policies that are equitable and will sustain community improvements for the long term.
Through our Thriving Cities work (HEAL Cities and CityHealth), we collaborate with municipal leaders and policymakers to support cities — large and small, urban and rural — to develop and implement a broad array of policies that promote positive health outcomes among their residents.
The benefits of safe and easy ways to get from point A to point B can’t be overstated. We are actively engaged with local Safe Routes to School coalitions and efforts across our region to adopt Complete Streets ordinances. These efforts are helping to create safe, accessible pedestrian paths and street systems that benefits all users, ages and abilities.
For more than a decade, Kaiser Permanente has partnered with the City of Portland to bring Sunday Parkways to neighborhoods. The program opens streets and parks to people of all ages and backgrounds during the first Sunday of each Month from May through September. Sunday Parkways brings neighbors together in a fun and festive atmosphere that fosters civic pride, stimulates economic development and encourages residents to get moving and get active.