Are The Plans for RiseVT Drawing Attention?

Yes! RiseVT is the innovative, engaging wellness initiative of the Community Committee on Healthy Lifestyles designed to help our entire community embrace healthier lifestyles. While the official launch of RiseVT is not until June, it has already started to draw attention within our community, which is really exciting! In addition, we were just interviewed by a team from the Prevention Institute of California who are working with Vermont’s Population Health Work Group on studying best practices nationally in improving population health and identifying efforts in Vermont which can serve as building blocks to statewide improvement.

Already, 195 individuals and families have shared their email address with us to stay in touch as RiseVT comes together and to be informed of the official launch! You can join them on that list by going to our initial web presence at www.risevt.com From there, you can also connect with RiseVT through social media, including Facebook (where you can add to our 380 “likes”), Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest! Dorey Demers, the RiseVT Coordinator, is adding great content to our social media presence on an ongoing basis – details on fun family activities; options for delicious healthy eating choices; information about local walking paths, hiking trails, and other resources for physical activities; and more! Our full website is being designed and will roll out along with the full RiseVT initiative. Please join the beginnings of this fun, healthy “movement” by adding your email to our contact list and engaging with us through social media!

Meanwhile, RiseVT is moving through the “pilot” phase, where we are engaging individuals, families, schools, organizations, and municipalities in testing out our RiseVT scorecards that measure engagement in aspects of healthy lifestyles. For individuals and families, they map out healthy choices and activities with frequencies that reflect a progressive range from “trying things out” to “becoming a habit” all the way to “this is my lifestyle.” That’s our goal, helping all of us embrace healthier lifestyles. For businesses, schools, and municipalities, it’s about policies and infrastructure and culture that helps support healthy lifestyles. Ultimately, our goal is to help make the healthy choice the easy choice in every setting. Doing so will improve our individual health and lower healthcare costs as we lessen the need for costly reactive interventions that can be prevented. We are getting great feedback through the pilots to help refine the processes within RiseVT before it rolls out community-wide.

Last week, a team from the Prevention Institute of California visited St. Albans to learn more about our community’s collaborative efforts around health and wellness, and specifically our plans for RiseVT. They spent three hours with members of the Community Committee On Healthy Lifestyles. They were able to learn about the data within our Community Needs Assessment that identifies improving healthy lifestyles as a top priority for our community. We showed them the results of the “Results Based Accountability” process which we used to determine our measureable improvement goals and the evidence-based strategies which would be used to reach those goals. We discussed the importance of broad collaboration and outreach in an initiative like RiseVT – each one of us plays a part in improving our individual and overall community health. We mapped out our plans for RiseVT and discussed how we will measure our progress. They were genuinely interested throughout and even impressed at times. It is always reassuring and invigorating to have experts review what you are doing and encourage you to keep going. They will use their insights into RiseVT in a report for the State’s Population Health Work Group, which I serve on, to help Vermont better understand both the national best practice in health improvement and the exciting building blocks of that effort which are emerging in areas around the State, such as RiseVT here in our community.

We are so excited to be moving closer to the full roll out of RiseVT in June! Please visit our initial splash page at www.risevt.com to share your email with us as part of a pledge to explore a healthier lifestyle. Use the links from that site to engage with RiseVT on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. No more excuses, it is almost Spring and the perfect time to get moving!  

— Jill Berry Bowen, NMC’s Chief Executive Officer