Topic: College of Sciences and Humanities

April 6, 2016

The Healthy Community Alliance of Delaware and Blackford Counties is seeking partners from local businesses, organizations and groups that wish to see the two-county area become a healthier place to live, learn, work and play.

Area business leaders and members of the public are invited to learn more about the Healthy Community Alliance on April 14 during information sessions at 7 a.m. at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital South Tower Atrium and at 6 p.m. at Open Door Health Services, 333 S. Madison St. RSVP to or 765-747-3420.

The effort is being led by a steering committee composed of a cross section of community stakeholders and supported by partner organizations that will play an active role in efforts to improve three key areas of lifestyle behaviors — improved nutrition, increased physical activity and reduced tobacco use.

IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital is the “backbone” organization of the effort, providing resources to help organize and operate the initiative.

“The Healthy Community Alliance is intended to bring all sectors of our communities together — not just health and wellness entities,” said John Disher, community outreach manager, IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital Foundation.  “The alliance has been designed to support the involvement of any organization or community group willing to help improve the health and well-being of community members.”

Faculty and staff from Ball State University have played an active role in the formation of the alliance, and the organization was one of the first to sign on as a partner participant.

“As an anchor institution in east central Indiana, we are pleased to formalize what’s already been a long, successful partnership,” said Terry King, acting president of Ball State. “Our university community welcomes continued opportunities to strengthen already robust health and wellness initiatives for all who live and work in Delaware and Blackford counties.”

King said university resources include research expertise and proven best practices.

The alliance seeks to address health challenges in the community through shared common goals and shared tactics within a collective impact coalition model.

“Businesses, churches and other organizations all have audiences that are in a position to hear consistent messaging about ways to live a healthy lifestyle,” said Terry Whitt Bailey, alliance steering committee member and community development director for the city of Muncie. “We want to engage those audiences in significant ways in the years to come.”