Turning great ideas into healthier communities

Issue Areas

Physical Activity

Physical inactivity contributes to many of the leading causes of preventable death, and plays a major role in a host of chronic diseases and health-threatening conditions, such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Unfortunately, many communities do not have access to safe places to play and be physically active.

The Public Health Institute is committed to improving health outcomes by increasing opportunities for physical activity. We work to advance policy and environmental change to ensure that all communities have access to environments that support physical activity opportunities, and many of these efforts have co-benefits for the environment and local economic development.  Through community-based solutions, youth and parent empowerment approaches, and a focus on scalable strategies that benefit primarily low-resource, high-need communities, our staff is available to work with you to develop, launch, implement and evaluate measures to increase physical activity opportunities on the local, state, and national levels.

Our expertise includes:

  • Policy development and advocacy: Our experts have led and supported advocacy campaigns to pass groundbreaking physical activity legislation, such as: changing school-based policies, advancing active transportation measures, and creating local parks and green spaces. 
  • Designing and implementing worksite wellness programs: PHI has partnered with more than 200 worksites to introduce physical activity education and positive environmental changes, with a focus on low-wages industries like agriculture, manufacturing, hospitality and retail. 
  • Measuring the success of physical activity programs and policies: We can work with you to develop evaluation processes for new and existing physical activity projects; create data collection instruments, data entry templates, report forms, and training materials; conduct impact evaluation on social marketing campaigns direct project interventions, and pilot projects; and build the capacity of your staff to participate in ongoing project evaluation efforts.
  • Training: PHI experts are available to provide hands-on trainings for staff and coalitions interested in advancing physical activity. Our sessions include strategic planning, policy development, media advocacy, and more. 
  • Consultation and TA: PHI also provides consultation and technical assistance to support your work, as needed or an ongoing basis.

HOW CAN WE WORK TOGETHER? SEND US AN EMAIL.


Resources and Tools

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Experts

Elizabeth Emerson

Elizabeth Emerson is co-investigator of the Health Spectrum Program and the Smoke-Free International Program. She received the Humanitari...

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Genoveva Islas

Genoveva Islas, MPH, directs Cultiva La Salud, which works to address poor nutrition and physical inactivity in the San Joaquin Valley by creating ...

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Lynn Silver

Lynn Silver is a senior advisor at PHI for chronic disease and obesity as well as the director of PHI's California Project LEAN. She works to e...

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Sharon Sugerman

Sharon Sugerman, MS, RD, FADA is Research and Evaluation Program Director for Public Health Institute’s Center for Wellness and Nutrition. In...

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Programs

California Project LEAN

California Project LEAN (Leaders Encouraging Activity and Nutrition) is a program of the Public Health Institute. It works to advance nutrition and...

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CAN-Act

CAN-Act (the California Association of Nutrition & Activity Programs) supports healthy eating and active living in California by providing lead...

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Center for Wellness and Nutrition

The Public Health Institute Center for Wellness and Nutrition recognizes the connections among local community environments, poor diet, physic...

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Central California Regional Obesity Prevention Program

The Central California Regional Obesity Prevention Program (CCROPP) began in 2005 as a model program utilizing a policy and environmental change ap...

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Cultiva La Salud

As an initiative of the Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH), Cultiva La Salud works in Fresno, Kern and Stanislaus counti...

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Dialogue4Health

Dialogue4Health (D4H), a project of PHI, is a community that conceives, builds and shares strategies to improve the public's health. D4H p...

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Here's How We're Making a Difference

PHI's CA4Health Spreads Safe Routes to School

CA4Health, PHI’s statewide Community Transformation Grant covering rural and small California counties, worked with 100 schools to implement Safe Routes to School (SRTS). The program is locally driven and built around activities such as critical infrastructure repairs, parent-organized “walking school buses,” regular “walk to school” days and events, safety education, school zone traffic enforcement, and more. As a result, nearly 5,000 more California kids were able to walk and bike to school safely. 

Power Play! Social Media Campaign

Photo by Tim Wagner/HEACThe Children’s Power Play! Campaign, a research-proven social marketing campaign by PHI’s Network for a Healthy California (now the Center for Wellness and Nutrition), reached 500,000 low-income California children a year and improved attitudes about eating fruits and vegetables and staying physically active.