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Our health is affected every day by our communities. Children and adults are healthier when they live, work, learn and play in places that encourage good health. We can prevent poor health now and in the future if we create healthier environments today. Anderson is committed to improving local places and systems to support residents' health.

The McDonald County Health Department was chosen as one of 18 local public health agencies to participate in the Building Communities for Better Health program through the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. The purpose of the project is to build communities where all residents have access to healthy foods, safe places to be active and tobacco-free environments in an effort to decrease long-term illnesses. Chronic diseases are the leading causes of death and disability in Missouri.

Creating healthy environments starts with knowing what you want to change. The McDonald County Health Department spent the last year working with the McDonald County Community Coalition reviewing policies and conditions throughout the community to determine opportunities for improving health. Using the information gathered, the coalition developed a chronic disease prevention plan that will improve health through access to physical activity and increase access to healthy food in one location.

Funding was granted to pave a trail around the Corcoran Ball Park in Anderson, creating a walking trail with no cost to the city. The goal is to give residents access to places to be physically active.

For more information about the Anderson Community Coalition or to join the efforts, please contact Paige Behm at 417-223-4351.

This program is supported by funds made available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Center for State, Tribal, Local and Territorial Support, under grant number NB01OT009221 contracted through the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services.

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