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AHA improves the health and well-being of Wake County residents by facilitating and supporting community initiatives.

GIS Maps: Physical Activity and Healthy Food Choices


Geographic information system (GIS) is a tool that enables AHA and its partners to best understand how to advocate for policy and environmental change by developing an AHA GIS Community Assessment Map of resources currently in place. The map shows where we can:

  • be active
  • find healthy foods

The map provides a framework for decision-making for AHA and a way to communicate data to AHA members, the general public, elected officials and other organizations. The map offers a new way to educate the public about opportunities and needs, as well as ways to engage the community in the process.

Engaging Youth with GIS

Map development expanded to include new partners by bringing 4H youth into the process. Youth were educated on the importance of healthful eating and physical activity and then introduced to the use of technology for data collection as a way to better understand opportunities in their own neighborhoods. Through this process they developed advocacy skills to educate others on the status of healthful opportunities in the community.

NC study of elementary school
on-task classroom
behavior improved with
daily 10-minute
physical activity breaks.

Active Living Research

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