Social connectedness plays a big role in our overall health and is a public health priority. Research shows that people with good social connections have a decreased risk of all-cause mortality and morbidity. However, according to a Harvard article, 36% of American feel “serious loneliness” and loneliness has increased over the last couple of years due to the pandemic. Those who have family and friends may not feel as lonely as the people who do not have family and friends or their family and friends don’t live close by. For those people, the community plays a big role in staying connected. One great initiative from the Safe Routes Partnership, can help people stay connected while spending time outdoors and exercising, double win. The Community Walk and Roll Program was modeled after another program Healthy Savannah, a program that works on creating an environment where making healthy choices is an easy choice.
Starting a Community Walk and Roll Program is easy, choose the location, invite community members, and go for a walk. There is even a toolkit available to help you get started available here. Communities that have started a similar program, also added a live streaming option so people that can’t participate feel included.
GMTMA can help organize the walks, communicate with other walkers, track steps, CO2 and more. Download and use the free NJ Walking School Bus to organize your Community Walk and Roll.
Download the Apple version here.
Download the Android version here.
Have fun walking and connecting with people in your neighborhood.