Carver County SHIP News | April 2017

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Carver County Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP)

A Note From Waconia Food Shelf

Waconia Food Shelf
New canvas prints showcase healthy produce at Waconia Food Shelf

We at the Waconia Food Shelf could not be more grateful for our partnership with SHIP over the last few years. SHIP has assisted us in providing more nutritious food options, and our clients now select their food items in a more inviting and dignified space.

An example of a change resulting from our work with SHIP is the purchase of a large refrigeration cooler.  This means we can have on hand even more produce and dairy, which are items widely requested by our clients.  The additional storage space allows us to proudly offer a great selection of produce, milk, and eggs donated by local businesses, farmers and residents.

One of the biggest changes is also the most eye-catching. Waconia Food Shelf is now a vibrant space that showcases healthy food items. Because of SHIP, we are able to display fruits and vegetables in baskets. These baskets also extend the shelf life, ensuring that our clients have quality produce options regardless of which day they come. We also recently added large canvas pictures highlighting healthy eating options. These canvases fill up the walls with beautiful, healthy produce images that encourage our clients to select nutritious foods.

The Waconia Food Shelf assists our clients in many ways, and it means a great deal to us to provide them with quality food options while shopping in a comfortable and inspiring facility. With SHIP’s assistance, we continue to grow, learn and make our food shelf a healthier space.

City Festivals and the Carver County Fair Will Be Tobacco Free in 2017

Norwood Young America Stiftungsfest
The tobacco-free signage says "We share our air: Thank you for not using tobacco."

During the summer of 2016, the Carver County Public Health (CCPH) Department partnered with seven cities in Carver County and the Carver County Fair on a Family Friendly Festival initiative that focused on improving social norms at city festivals and events. Three components – breastfeeding, tobacco-free spaces and responsible beverage server training – were chosen for the initiative based on priorities set by the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP), findings from the Carver County Community Health Needs Assessment and Carver County data from the County Health Rankings. SHIP funds were used to purchase signage for cities interested in designating their festivals and events tobacco free. Cities that participated were Steamboat Days (Carver), River City Days (Chaska), Stiftungsfest (Norwood Young America), Volksfest (Victoria) and Rails to Trails (Watertown). The Carver County Fair was also 100% tobacco-free.

Due to the success of the Family Friendly Festival initiative in 2016, CCPH will continue to work with cities in Carver County and the Carver County Fair to create festivals and events that promote health. Each of the five cities and the County Fair, all of which designated their events tobacco free in 2016, plan to do so again in 2017. Cities that did not participate in the tobacco-free space component of the initiative last year will be encouraged by CCPH to designate their festivals and events tobacco-free this year.

Creating spaces free of tobacco reduces the risk of secondhand smoke exposure and supports a healthy environment for children and families. It also eliminates the most common form of litter—cigarette butts—which are especially harmful since they do not decompose. Tobacco-free festivals and events create healthier spaces for all attendees.


Breathe easy this summer while enjoying one of these tobacco-free events.

Bluff Creek Elementary: On the Road to a Lifetime of Good Health

Bluff Creek Elementary

Bluff Creek Elementary in Chanhassen is a leader in school wellness. In partnership with SHIP, the school has been working to implement many different healthy lifestyle initiatives that benefit both students and staff.

Each year the school health council creates two to three well-being goals that set the stage for the wellness activities for the school year.  Health and wellness are incorporated into the school day through activity boxes encouraging movement in the classroom, agriculture lessons using the on-site garden as well as the garden on wheels, “healthy celebrations,” which promote healthy ways to celebrate special occasions instead of offering high-sugar treats, and much more.

The staff is committed to wellness and has integrated nutrition and physical activity into classroom curriculums. Teachers have expanded their knowledge and skills through SHIP-funded professional development opportunities. Physical Education teacher Stacy Godwin highlights the great work: “Staff and students across the Bluff Creek community have embraced this variety of initiatives that focus on healthy living and feedback from participants has been overwhelmingly positive.”

News and Upcoming Events

Did You Hear?

Carver County ranked first for health outcomes and second for health factors, out of 87 counties in Minnesota, according to the 2017 County Health Rankings report released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. The County Health Rankings call attention to the health of the community as a whole, as opposed to the focus of health status of individuals.

But not everyone has the same opportunities to be healthy. Carver County Public Health and SHIP continue to create healthy communities by increasing healthy eating and physical activity opportunities and targeting tobacco use and secondhand smoke exposure. Check out the rankings here.

Bike Month

Say hello to spring and go for a ride to celebrate National Bike Month!

National Bike to Work Week is May 15-19 and Bike to Work Day is May 15! Click here for information on how to promote Bike Month at your worksite.

Carver County Public Health and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) will host a free class entitled "Gray Matters: Depression in Older Adults." Check out the flyer for more information.

Gray Matters

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