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.

To find a general listing of resources visit our Resources section.
Follow community progress on Twitter: twitter.com/@BC_HC, #BCHC_SeedingRural

Dig Deeper

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.

ihttp://www.citypopulation.de/Canada-BritishColumbia.html and wiki

Focus Areas

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.

Contribute

If you find the portal useful, or if you are looking for something specific, we would love to hear from you as we continue to develop the resources. Contact us here.

 

Describes the steps and actions needed to develop and implement local community economic development strategies in smaller rural communities.
– Alberta Community and Co-operative Association

The Rural Health Information Hub provides short, accessible, evidence based descriptions of a range of models, innovations and initiatives. Use this as a stepping off point to dig deeper or adapt the innovation into your own community.

- Rural Health Information Hub

This publication documents research around eleven  models of regional food aggregation and distribution in Wisconsin as a support for farmer and supply chain start-up planning.  Authors:  Lindsey Day-Farnsworth, Brent McCown, Michelle Miller, Anne Pfeiffer for UW-Extension Ag Innovation Center, UW-Madison Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems

- University of Wisconsin Extension Ag Innovation Center and Madison Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems

The opening 30 pages of this guide provide a useful overview of research and literature related to thriving or resilient rural communities.  The authors summarize five key traits of communities that thrive (willing to experiment with new ideas, positive mindset, a community plan, economic development capacity, leadership, healthy behaviours) and share examples from Australian small towns.

- Peter Kenyan and Allan Black, Australia

The Kootenay Smoke Free Coalition supports communities in creating tobacco reduction bylaws through a streamlined process supported by the best research available.

The Social Planning and Research Council of BC (SPARC BC) is a non-partisan, charitable organization with a focus on accessibility, community development, income security and social planning.  This link takes you to their Social Inclusion Toolkits and Manuals.

- Social Planning and Research Council of BC

SCRD photo

The Sunshine Coast Regional District (SCRD) achieved a milestone in the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Partners for Climate Protection Program with Corporate Emissions and Community Energy Emissions Plans, and took a unified approach to sustainability.

This online guide provides resources for educators, including lesson plans linked to BC Curriculum Prescribed Learning Outcomes addressing the themes of air quality, health, and community engagement.
– Prince George Air Improvement Roundtable (PGAIR) 

How the Cowichan Regional Airshed Roundtable used evidence and shared leadership to address air quality improvement in the region.

THE OPPORTUNITY

The Cowichan Valley Regional district historically has a strong reliance on the forest sector and wood burning for home heating, clearing land and traditional practices. The Region’s history of burning and nature of its topography has led to having some of the poorest air quality in BC.i

A report that focuses on regional planning and the relevance of parks and greenspace.
– Alberta Recreation and Parks Association

This strategy takes a policy and environmental approach to encouraging healthy eating and physical activity in Nova Scotia.  

- Province of Nova Scotia

For rural residents without a private vehicle, access to services is a significant barrier and an impediment to being active members of society.  This resource describes the models and building blocks required for a co-ordinated approach in your community. - Rural Ontario Institute 

child biking

The City of Enderby and the Splatsin Nation engaged in a joint transportation planning process that will benefit generations to come.

Months of preparation had led up to this day, but City of Enderby Assistant Corporate Officer and Planning Assistant Kurt Inglis could not predict what would happen.

A variety of research papers and tested resources can be found on this website covering topics from resource towns in transition to rural age friendly needs assessments, communication strategies and youth/seniors inclusion resources.  

-  University of Northern BC, Community Development Institute

This link to the University of Northern BC, Community Development Institute takes you to Housing related papers: from a review of Cottage Country housing issues in Norman Lake, to an Economic Development Framework for Interpreting Housing Markets in Small Towns in Canada.

- University of Northern BC, Community Development Institute

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