Resources for Small, Rural and Remote Communities
Now Available: Resources tailored to the rural community context!
This resource portal is a response to the unique opportunities, challenges, and approaches to fostering health and well-being in small, rural and remote communities in BC. The portal offers resources related to PlanH action areas with a rural lens.
The Rural Context
There are over 110 cities, towns, municipalities and villages in BC and of those, over 75% are small, rural or remote communities of less than 30,000 people.i A healthy community approach takes resources and leadership. This can be challenging in small and remote communities where there are fewer organizations, resources and volunteers to do the work. There is often no organization to lead on new or emerging issues like food security or support for seniors at home, and yet the need is often there.
On the positive side, there are many tools and examples of rural success and innovation. Many of these examples are stories of collaborating across sectors, and all of them illustrate “can do” attitudes and creativity to improve well-being.
Resources are organized by the same Take Action Areas as the rest of the PlanH site (Healthy Society, Healthy People, Healthy Environment), for ease of searching.
If you find the portal useful, or if you are looking for something specific, we would love to hear from you in the next year as we continue to build out the resources. Contact us here.
Thanks to innovative planning and multi-sectoral collaboration, the Village of Granisle is a thriving community as well as a vivid demonstration of how age-friendly policies improve health and wellness for community members of all ages.
A version of the Global Age-Friendly Cities: A Guide adapted to the considerations of rural and remote communities, developed using input from seniors in ten rural and/or remote communities in Canada, including two in British Columbia (Alert Bay and Lumby).
– Federal/Provincial/Territorial Ministers Responsible for Seniors
The purpose of this document is to present the evidence on associations between agriculture and health.The relationship between agriculture and human health in British Columbia (BC) is complex and multifaceted. The availability of healthy food is an important determinant of health, but only one of many connections between agriculture and health. Agriculture influences food choices and healthy eating patterns, and impacts a variety of social, environmental and economic determinants of health.
This research provides an overview of different health co-op models and the benefits and challenges around each. It includes case examples from Port Alberni and Nelson BC.
- Luba Payanotoff-Schaan
BCNPHA and registry offers a variety of programs and services to non-profit housing societies to support and strengthen the capacity of the sector, from group insurance and property management, to energy efficiency and capital planning.
- BC Non-Profit Housing Association
The BC Rural Network was formed in 2004 to enhance the capacity of rural British Columbia to develop responses to rural and remote community issues. Their searchable resources pages include reports and tools on a wide range of topics from health to transportation and economic development.
- BC Rural Network
Describes some of the specific challenges and pressures related to rural poverty within Canada, and includes potential strategies for reinvigorating rural economies with agriculture, forestry, and tourism. The report examines social policy regarding the income gap, rural housing, crime, immigration, and health care, and how to strengthen a healthy community approach.
– Final Report of the Standing Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry
This article tells the story of government and nonprofit agencies in B.C.'s southern interior who found ways to overcome their "silos" of mandate, jurisdiction, history, and politics in order to address gaps in safety and employment development for low income women.
- Jodi Koberinski and Kathy O'Malley
For the last two years the local government of Bowen Island has led a multi-sectoral and collaborative process to develop an active transportation network and reduce citizens’ reliance on cars. The result is the Integrated Transportation Master Plan (ITMP), a 20-year vision that will guide the municipality in all its transportation decisions.
This toolkit is for people working in community development, health and community leaders who want to strengthen community resilience factors: social networks & support, positive outlook, learning, early experience, environment & lifestyle, infrastructure, sense of purpose, diverse economy, embracing differences, beliefs and leadership.
- University of Queensland and University of Southern Queensland
– BC Recreation and Parks Association
Burns Lake’s Active Transportation Plan capitalizes on community qualities and tourism potential.
The Agriculture Now Plan will help the City of Campbell River and partner organizations grow a resilient agriculture sector in Campbell River. It is intended to drive food production, attract new farmers, increase the value of the local farm economy, and draw existing and new residents into the agriculture sector. Success in building a viable agriculture sector in Campbell River provides other towns with similar attributes with a model and approach for attracting investment to the community.
CMHC offers numerous resources about building and design, green building, affordable and accessible housing development.
- Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation
The Yarrow Eco Village Society started in 2002 with 25 acres in the Fraser Valley and today Groundswell Co-Housing is almost sold out, the Community Farm is fully subscribed and they are in development stages for Elderberry Seniors Co-housing. Read about their early development process or vist their website for current contacts.
- Yarrow Eco Village