What could be more important than living in a healthy community?
Members of the Town’s Community Wellness Committee are determined to find out what a healthy community means to the residents of Niagara-
Chair Cindy Grant says the committee is using a definition of wellness that includes the highest quality of life, “in its full breadth of expression, focused on but not necessarily exlusive to good living standards, robust health, a sustainable environment, vital communities, an educated populace, balanced time use, high levels of democratic participation, and access to and participation in leisure and
But that is a broad scope, Grant says, and before the committee goes further, members want to hear what residents think is working well in the community, what needs to be improved, and what they can offer in the way of solutions.
Grant can’t necessarily “promise to deliver,” she says, “but we want to hear not just about what’s wrong, but about any solutions residents may have.”
There is a survey for residents to take on Join the Conversation, which so far has about 140 responses. Grant would love to up that number to 300 or 350. It’s easy, and will take about five minutes, she says.
In addition, she is hoping for a good turnout to a public forum which will be held at the community centre in two sessions, Thursday, Sept 26 from
2 to 4 p.m., and from
7 to 9 p.m.
The committee has defined wellness to include eight different categories within its framework: healthy community; community vitality, which includes transportation; cultural and leisure; democratic engagement; environment; education; time use; and living standards, which touches on the need for affordable apartments for seniors.
At the forum, participants will be given an overview of the work of the committee and its terms of reference, before breaking up into small groups to discuss each of the topics.
The information gathered will be combined with the results from the survey, Grant says, with a report and recommendations to go to council this fall, and work to start on carrying out recommendations in the new year. With such a broad range of topics, some of the initiatives may overlap with other committees, she says.
The Wellness Committee is new to this term of council, combining the previous age-friendly committee and other considerations relating to health.
“It’s not just about health, although that’s part of it. It’s more about anything that makes a community a good place to live, a well place to be,” says Grant. “We based it on similar initiatives, national and international, that describe what makes a town a good place to live, and then made it a Niagara-on-the-Lake-specific project.”
It’s not too late to take the survey at https://www.jointheconversationnotl.org/.