Bourbon County was recognized on Wednesday in Salina at the Kansas State of Wellness Symposium for earning the prestigious Community Health Champion award.
Bourbon County and The Healthy Bourbon County Action Team realized that prevalence of diabetes in the county is over 25% higher than the national rate and decided to change that. Led by Jody Hoener, Mercy Clinic Quality Liaison, the team worked hard to engage community members and organizations in their planning efforts with much success.
Since inception of The Healthy Bourbon County Action team, they have assisted with creating additional trails for biking and walking, installed bike racks and shared bicycles around Fort Scott, installed water bottle filling stations at a school and are getting healthy, locally grown foods in restaurants. Through building partnerships, they have cultivated a community culture that is more supportive of healthy lifestyles.
Representative from the team were onsite at the fourth annual Kansas State of Wellness Symposium to receive the award.
“I was so proud to be a part of the Bourbon County Action Team that traveled to Salina to receive the Community Champion Award for our great ‘City,’” said Dave Martin, Fort Scott city manager. “People were amazed with all that the hard work and progress that we are making and Jody Hoener did a great job representing us on a success panel. It is wonderful that Peerless was highlighted in their work with their associates on controlling diabetes. A healthy community is a happy community.”
Blue Cross and Blue Shield Blue of Kansas, Kansas Alliance for Wellness and WorkWell Kansas have provided support to businesses, health organizations and communities as they work to improve health and wellness across the state. The symposium allowed organizations to collaborate and work together toward a common purpose of greater health outcomes.
“It’s a privilege to recognize organizations across the state that are working hard to improve health,” said Missty Lechner, Advocacy Project Director, Kansas Alliance for Wellness. “Each of the awardees have taken on various challenges to impact and improve health in very different ways. Regardless of the type of organization or the struggles they have encountered, each has been able to achieve meaningful progress over the past few years.”
Awards were also presented to USD 465 in Winfield, KS, which received the Organization Health Champion award, and Orion Education & Training in Clearwater, KS, which received the Worksite Health Champion award.