Field of Work: Engaging faith communities in improving the health of congregations and communities.
Problem Synopsis: Faith-based coalitions are energized to advocate for and promote efforts to improve the health and wellness of communities.
Synopsis of the Work: Project staff at Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon built and engaged coalitions in Portland and Corvallis, Ore., and supported coalition activities designed to improve the health of congregations and of communities.
The project team created the Congregational Health Index, which includes a survey tool and step-by-step guide to help congregations discover opportunities and challenges for improving the health of their members through diet and exercise. Seven faith communities from the two coalitions piloted the Index and developed initiatives such as a community garden and open gym times.
Project staff also developed a Congregational Wellness Pledge to help congregations make a more conscious commitment to wellness.