Healthy Communities

Gulf Coast Healthy Communities

Funded by the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, the Gulf Coast Healthy Communities project supported three nonprofit organizations in Biloxi, Mobile, and Pensacola with providing locally-based, publicly accessible data platforms to drive local collaboration. These web-based platforms offered civic leaders, engaged citizens, and othershyperlocal information about the multiple factors that influence community health. Each project site used the data to plan projects and initiatives to support healthy and resilient communities.

As a result of LPHI’s initial investment, the partnership behind the Gulf Coast Community Exchange has only expanded. ExCHANGE leaders participated in the Healthiest Cities and Counties Challenge, a national funding opportunity from the American Public Health Association, the National Association of Counties, and the Aetna Foundation. Through the challenge, the group launched Feed the Seed, an urban food project that connected community gardening, nutrition education, and grower’s markets.

ExCHANGE leaders are also collaborating with Gulfport Invest Health to assist the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) with the creation of Mayoral Health Councils in each city across the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The ExCHANGE will serve as a tool for city leaders as they seek data and partnerships for health council projects.