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 as we continue to develop the resources. Contact us here.
This guide is intended to help practitioners—engineers, planners, health professionals, economic development officials and others—to improve travel options for residents of small and rural communities. This includes a range of actions that make personal transportation activities more sustainable— encouraging drivers to operate their cars more efficiently, or to leave their cars at home and walk, cycle, take transit or carpool instead.
– Transport Canada
This research explored the extent to which rural areas are and should be engaged with sustainability planning, what that looks like in a rural context and if stakeholders feel a sense of engagement with urban and provincial sustainability goals. The findings are important for local governments, planners and agriculture activists.
- Fraser Basin Council
The local government, health authority and numerous community partners in Kitimat deliver this award winning campaign for physical activity and health. The slides include contacts for more information.
- City of Kitimat and Northern Health Authority
Partnerships have resulted in strong community engagement and increased physical activity in the District of Kitimat. The District of Kitimat and Northern Health signed the Active Living, Health and Wellness Protocol in 2008 to formalize a long-standing, mutually beneficial relationship, and the rewards to the community keep coming.
Food insecurity is a growing concern for many households with clear impacts on health and wellbeing. Across Canada, many organizations are taking new approaches to improve food security. This paper highlights the experience of the Ontario Association of Public Health Nutrition Professionals and Food Secure Canada in advocating to improve food security focusing on three advocacy roles in public health
Learning Initiatives for Rural and Northern BC (LIRN BC) is a collaborative approach to building on the capacities of rural, remote and Northern British Columbian communities. LIRN BC can bring trainers and facilitators to your community to deliver a learning event for residents. Visit their website for information on applying for support.
A toolkit with different ideas for how local government and others can promote enjoyment of fruits and vegetables in remote communities including preservation, gardening, and others.
– BC Ministry of Health
This is a useful example of a Housing Needs Assessment that integrates stakeholder/user perspectives.
- Lower Columbia Community Development Society
The Malahat Nation decided to embark on a ground-truthing initiative, led by Elders and youth in collaboration with the University of Victoria, to decide which land could be developed and which land should be conserved. This partnership allowed for the stimulation of intergenerational relationships knowledge exchange, and a shared understanding of the importance of specific plants for traditional uses.
This report shares results from 11 communities in rural Minnesota that undertook assessment and planning to strengthen their information and communications technology. For local governments, business associations and planners.
- Intelligent Community Forum
This guide has been prepared by the Ministry of Health, in collaboration with BC Healthy Communities, to serve as a guide for local governments/First Nations in the planning of a municipal alcohol policy (MAP). A MAP helps local governments/First Nations manage alcohol facilities they own and manage, and reduces liability for alcohol-related problems. This guide explains what a MAP is, how it can benefit your local government/First Nation and how to create one, from start to finish.
Includes policies and design guidelines for active transportation in winter conditions.
A multi-sectoral effort in the Cowichan Valley, under the leadership and guidance of Cowichan Elders, has been working together to foster social connections and to facilitate a cultural shift.
For health professionals, educators and policy makers, this Toolkit defines a sample Aboriginal health bridging training program that blends western and Aboriginal practices, resources and pedagogy.
- Indigenous Adult and Higher Learning Society
With limited capacity, enforcement of the Bylaw was difficult. The Village relied on effective messaging to change social norms, and complaint-based enforcement if bylaw violations were persistent.