Salem’s Bobbie Schumacher wants more sidewalks. Mary Chapman of Braxton County wants ideas for an even healthier senior center.
Health-conscious locals found like-minded people Wednesday at the Bridgeport Conference Center with a central goal — better health.
As four health departments in the state roll out a project to make West Virginia residents healthier, an $8 million Community Transformation Grant over five years should help.
The grant continues and expands a project for improving public health in the Mid-Ohio Valley that began 2010.
The effort should start in the Harrison County area before the new year, according to John D. Yauch, project director for Change the Future WV.
The Change the Future WV project in the Mid-Ohio Valley was funded through a federal $4.5 million grant. There were 50 sites nationwide, Yauch said.
The project increased physical activity among students, constructed walking trails, grew new farmers markets and replaced unhealthy snacks at grocery store checkouts, among other efforts.
“We impacted the youngest up to the oldest people,” Yauch said, estimating that tens of thousands benefited from the two-year project.
Even stores for one big-box retailer in Charleston transformed a check-out aisle into a showcase of healthy food, magazines and exercise equipment like jump ropes, Yauch said.

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