Tallahassee Call To Action...
Prevention Education (COPE) Coalition
Dear Community of Families,
On behalf of the Tallahassee Hope Thru Childhood Obesity Prevention Education (COPE) Coalition, it is with great enthusiasm and pride, we, the Tallahassee COPE Leadership Team, support and present the Tallahassee Call to Action Plan. This plan is the result ofthe collective effort and hard work of a community committed to childhood obesity prevention for its greatest resource – the children of Tallahassee.
In April 2010, Florida A & M University (FAMU) and the Florida Family Network, Inc. (FFN), in partnership with the Florida State University Center on Better Health and Life for Underserved Populations and the Greater Frenchtown Revitalization Council, initiated plans for the development of a comprehensive coalition of public and private sector agencies, organizations, institutions and individuals, in our capital city, to address childhood overweight and obesity.
In September 2010, the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida Foundation (BCBSF) supported and funded the formation of the COPE Coalition. The vision of the Tallahassee COPE Coalition is to develop and implement a plan of action to decrease childhood obesity in Tallahassee. The development of this plan of action involved a 10-month planning process connecting a diverse coalition of stakeholders including representatives from academia, local and state health agencies, city and county government, state legislators, community health centers, local early childhood development agencies, local school board and foundation, local businesses, community-based organizations, civic organizations, individual community and neighborhood advocates, and the faith-based community. In this effort, we identified and developed work groups around four priority areas: Public Health/Prevention, Community Planning, Education/Communication and Policy. Using these priority areas, a thorough community assessment was conducted to identify key resources, concerns/gaps and action recommendations.
Through the community assessment process, we identified one critical gap: “the need for youth leadership and family engagement” in addressing this critical problem. Thus, as the COPE Coalition moves forward, we will focus our work on the proactive and sustained engagement of our youth, their families and the community, as we collectively work to combat childhood obesity in Tallahassee.
We invite you to join us in making a difference in ensuring our vision of Healthy Children! Healthy Future! Healthy Tallahassee!