Submitted by Emma Pillsworth, Local Project Manager for the Healthy Kids Community Challenge, Health Promotion Department, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
On November 17th, the Healthy Kids Community Challenge (HKCC) hosted an afternoon planning session to inform its third theme, Choose to Boost Veggies and Fruit, which will run from April to December, 2017. The purpose of this session was to take a Collective Impact approach to increasing vegetable and fruit consumption among children ages 0 to 12 and their families living in Hastings and Prince Edward Counties.
Thirty partners participated in the session, with representation from education, health, social services, municipal government, Aboriginal and rural populations. The strategic planning session was facilitated by Eric Lockhart from Queen’s School of Business using an electronic meeting system (EMS), otherwise known as “the Decision Centre,” developed at Queen’s University. This innovative facilitation process allowed participants to provide live feedback using a network of laptops accessing software.
The session began with a brief background and a mini needs assessment on issues, challenges, and gaps across our region related to vegetable and fruit consumption. Identified needs were prioritized, and participants were then asked to identify possible interventions by typing them into the laptops provided. Over 90 initiatives were brainstormed, and all proposed ideas appeared on a public screen at the front of the room. These ideas were then discussed and categorized into common themes. After several rounds of discussion, consolidation, and voting, the list was narrowed down to seven recommended interventions. Finally, potential roles for both the HKCC and its partner organizations were discussed for each proposed initiative and a list of useful resources to consider leveraging was generated. Overall, this facilitated planning session proved to be a useful way to accelerate idea generation and consensus building amoung community partners.
The Steering Committee will meet in February to finalize the Theme 3 action plan for submission to the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care in time for the March deadline.