Local health department receives $75,000 grant to increase access to healthy food

The Kansas Health Foundation awarded the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department a $75,000 grant that will go toward improving access to healthy foods in the area.

The health department was one of 12 in the state to receive funding through the foundation’s Healthy Communities Initiative.

Before applying for the grant, the health department underwent a yearlong planning process to form Roadmap to a Healthier Douglas County, which pinpoints specific changes that would improve the overall health of area residents, including increased opportunity for healthy eating at work and improving food and beverage environments at local venues.

The $75,000 grant will primarily focus on these goals and will be used to develop policies that could make nutritional foods available in public areas like community buildings, recreation centers, swimming pools, libraries, health care facilities and workplaces. The grant will also go toward developing nutritional standards and guidelines for these places.