The Western Region Heart Health Partnership
The Heart Health Partnership was initiated by the Western Regional Health
Board, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Nova Scotia, Heart Health Nova
Scotia, and the Nova Scotia Department of Health in the fall of 1996. Their
mission is: "To work with communities and individuals in discovering
and using effective ways to improve the heart health of Nova Scotians."
In 1997, the partnership was expanded to form a Regional
Coalition, including approximately twenty
community groups, organizations, and government departments working in
the Western Region and who were concerned about the health of Western area
The program objective of the Heart Health Partnership is to develop
and coordinate a system for supporting effective and sustained community-based
heart health activities. In order to achieve this, organizations on the
Partnership will reflect on the current status of their heart health promotion
programs, policies, and partnerships to assess if there are areas where
additional emphasis could be placed. In addition to these potential changes
within Partnership organizations, community mobilization efforts will be
undertaken in interested communities across the region. Organizations in
the Partnership have committed to support these efforts by in-kind contributions
of resources, both human and material, and by advocacy activities.
The purpose of the research is to investigate the dissemination of community-based
heart health promotion and practice; and to improve our understanding of
what inhibits or encourages the dissemination in the partner organizations
and the communities they serve. The current context of health reform presents
additional opportunities and challenges to consider.
To accomplish the research and program objectives, members of the Partnership
have formed four working groups:
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The Research Working Group is responsible for
developing and measuring indicators related to heart health capacity within
organizations, the process of community mobilization and partnership functioning.
The Community Activation Working Group will
seek to engage partner organizations and others at the local level and
will facilitate the development of community heart health action teams
and provide the necessary support these communities may require.
The Knowledge and Skills Working Group will develop
learning opportunities to build on the existing heart health capacity of
partner organizations and community heart health action teams.
The Communication and Awareness Working Group
will promote heart health and the work of the Heart Health Partnership
throughout the Western Health Region.