Award honours wellness efforts
What do a library system and a fitness resource centre have in common?
The answer that may spring to mind is “nothing,” but the successful partnership between Chinook Arch and Lethbridge College Be Fit For Life (BFFL) proves otherwise. These two organizations share a passion for bringing active living opportunities to as many people as possible, and were recently recognized with a ChooseWell Healthy Community Award for the creation of physical activity resources. These resources are available for use by the 31 rural member libraries in the Chinook Arch region when planning and delivering community-based programming.
Known as the Regional Programming Collection, the resources include giant checkers, parachutes, juggling scarves, indoor mini golf, hoops, and other physical literacy games.
“As community hubs for activity and information, libraries strive to serve their communities to the best of their ability,” says Lisa Weekes, Manager of Partnerships and Community Development for Chinook Arch. “It is through unique collaborations that libraries are able to offer a wider variety of programming than they could on their own.”
Collaboration on this project took the form of BFFL staff providing physical literacy training and programming ideas for regional library staff.
“I think it is always a wonderful thing when you can partner with another group and make a positive impact on the community,” says Tiffany Wideen, Program Administrator for BFFL. “We loved the idea of sharing active living opportunities with the people who call rural communities home”
“The power of partnerships never fails to amaze me,” adds Weekes. “Together we were able to offer what neither organization could on its own.”
The partnership proved worthwhile, with the pieces of the collection being used 75 times by 20 libraries in the first six months.
The ChooseWell Healthy Community Awards celebrate the efforts and achievements of communities and wellness champions across Alberta in promoting active living.
Weekes happily accepted the award in the category of “Building Community Capacity” that was presented in October during the Alberta Recreation and Parks Association Conference.
Participating in the presentation of the ChooseWell Healthy Community Award in October were, from left, Lisa McLaughlin, Program Manager, Communities ChooseWell; Lisa Weekes, Manager of Partnerships and Community Development; Alim Gillani, Senior Policy Lead, Alberta Health and Candace Nykiforuk, Alberta Recreation and Parks Association board member.