As we age, we gradually learn the concept of living beyond ourselves. We are often told at a very young age that our actions do not merely affect us but also many other people around us. Our actions, intentions, and choices affect society at large. The concept of communities or societies is not new. Men have survived in groups for ages, co-existing together based on shared religious beliefs, norms, cultural values, and identities. The idea of a community propagates that the people take care of each other and act responsibly for a greater cause. Health Matters
But here, we would like to focus on one primary matter, which is community health. Let us look into what community health is and why it matters? Further, we will look into different ways to improve community health.
What Is Community Health And Why Does It Matter?
People living together in a community often have shared stakes. For example, a robbery happening in one of the houses in a neighborhood would mean a warning sign for everyone else that the area is not safe anymore. It could also mean that people need more security or that the homeowners now need to be more alert.
Similarly, when we talk about public health, the community you reside in also makes a huge difference. The kind of culture surrounding you, the type of lifestyle the neighborhood commonly promotes, or the availability of resources that foster healthy behavior all impact the general public’s overall health. It is why local governments now take a community-centric approach to initiate public health programs.
Ways To Improve Public Health in Your Community
Now that we understand how our actions have more significant impacts, we must give more to our communities than merely existing with self-centered motives. There are several ways you can add substantial value to your community and aid in improving the health of the general public.
However, if you are way too passionate about this goal, why not consider taking a professional degree in community health. Education programs such as a general studies bachelor degree online or on-campus can let you become capable of doing so much for your community in health and wellness! But if this does not work for you, then below are a few other steps you can take to contribute towards community health.
- Volunteer At Your Child’s School/College
Often, schools and colleges run programs to promote healthy behavior. These programs might include short activities that promote good hygiene practices or provide information regarding ways to avoid a sedentary lifestyle. However, if you feel that the community school/college does not have any ongoing health awareness programs, you can convince the staff to introduce them. Parents commonly have quite a say in recommending things or providing valuable information to help volunteers arrange such programs. You can further include interactive activities, which can be highly impactful. Since kids spend most of their time at their educational institutes, they are likely to adopt habits that they practice with their friends and classmates rather than something you tell them at home by yourself. Health-related learning initiatives at schools/colleges are a remarkable way to improve community health.
- Promote a Healthy Lifestyle in Your family
They say, ‘if you want to change the world, start with yourself.’ Following this idea, one may assume that practicing healthy behavior by oneself is the first step to improve community health. Try and divide your meals into healthy portions of veggies and meat. Make your kids learn the importance of consuming fruits and their benefits.
It will also help if you reduce screen exposure and instead promote family time where you sit down and have casual chats or play some board games, etc. Too much screen time is highly detrimental. With the growing trend of watching Netflix series, playing video games, or just chatting with friends on WhatsApp, we have lost the concept of having a healthy one-on-one family discussion on various informative topics. You can further involve your kids in various activities that include planting more trees, cleaning their surroundings, practicing regular exercise, etc., to develop positive behavioral changes in them.
- Support Initiatives Taken By The Local Government
The local government is most commonly responsible for improving and bettering the community and its surroundings. Once you look into it, you will realize that the government will have a few programs running that aim at particular concerning matters. For example, a lack of playgrounds may hinder children from getting the necessary physical activity they need for healthy mental and physical growth. As a result, the government may aim at developing more playgrounds for kids in the neighborhood. Likewise, there can be numerous education programs set by the local government that aim to inform people about various health issues among women and children. You can learn about these programs and then offer your services to the local government body as a volunteer. Health Matters
It is undeniable that we cannot act out of mere selfish motives when we co-exist in a society. If we do, we negatively impact the lives of the people around us. Undoubtedly, the best way to contribute to this greater cause is to exhibit responsible behavior. In this article, we have highlighted some fruitful ways to take the initiative. We hope these ways can help you improve public health in your community. Health Matters