A network of communities working to increase healthy eating and active living in Illinois
From the Mississippi River to Lake Michigan, communities throughout Illinois are busy building healthier places to live. In recent years, the state has been plagued by some of the nation’s highest rates of chronic disease and obesity, but engaged communities and local coalitions are working relentlessly to turn that trend.
The Illinois Public Health Institute started the Healthy and Active Communities Network (HACN) to support local initiatives by providing a venue for sharing lessons learned and aligning goals and strategies to build sustainable change through influencing policy, systems and environments. As the Institute of Medicine has noted, “It is unreasonable to expect that people will change their behavior so easily when so many forces in the social, cultural, and physical environment conspire against change.” The Network aspires to create an Illinois in which all people – rural, suburban, and urban – have safe and healthy places to learn, work, play, and pray.
As the grassroots network of the Illinois Alliance to Prevent Obesity (IAPO), we have the power to achieve the IAPO goal of seeing level obesity trends in Illinois in 2015 and to move the trend downward by 2018.