#GiveKaneAVoice is more than a hashtag — it’s an unprecedented initiative by the Kane County Health Department to give you a chance to speak your mind about the ideas, concerns and opinions that will shape future programs to benefit all of Kane County.
In the next two weeks, residents will be asked to join a new Community Councils in Carpentersville, Elgin and Aurora, as the Health Department seeks volunteers from all walks of life to discuss ways to improve the culture of health where they live, work and play.
The initial meetings will be held:
- In Elgin — from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 9, at the Elgin YMCA, 220 E. Chicago St.
- In Aurora: — from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 15, at the Prisco Community Center, 150 W. Illinois Ave.
- In Carpentersville — from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 15, Dundee Township Assessor’s Office, 611 E. Main St., Suite 201, East Dundee.
The initiative is made possible through a a $10,000 award provided by the The Aetna Foundation and American Public Health Association. Kane County won the award when it was named one of 50 communities in the United States to take part in the Healthiest Cities & Counties Challenge.
The concept is simple: Mid-size cities and counties can significantly improve the health of their communities if they engage their citizens.So Aetna and the APHA are offering seed money to do just that. To provide additional incentive, four communities will be awarded $50,000 for successful initiatives, and a $500,000 prize will be awarded to the top-performing community.
“We want that community to be Kane County, IL,” said Kane County Health Department Executive Director Barb Jeffers. “And we truly want to give you a voice.”
And having a say in their community’s health programs is something people desperately want. According to the Healthiest Cities & Counties survey, 94 percent of Americans are willing to do something in order to have a healthier place to live.
Don’t you want that, too?
Participation will be easy. Free food and activities for children will be provided and the meetings will be bilingual.
“Too often people are not given the chance to contribute to the decisions that affect their lives,” Jeffers said. “This will be an opportunity to contribute to the community and help improve the lives of those around them. We already have a number of health improvement programs in place so we won’t have to ‘re-invent the wheel.’ ”
What You Can Do Right Now
Let the Health Department know if you or someone you know would like to attend by emailing Terry Roman at firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 630-264-7653. Please follow the Challenge using the hashtag #GiveKaneAVoice, and learn more by visiting kanehealth.com/challenge.htm and www.healthiestcities.org.