NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - The Healthy Nacogdoches Coalition is beginning its seventh year of encouraging people to do what's right for their body and mind.
East Texas News sat in as volunteers conducted strategic planning for yet another year of healthy living.
The Healthy Nacogdoches Coalition concept was introduced by Nacogdoches Memorial Hospital. Under new leadership, the vow of continued support was heard.
The county hospital provides staff guidance, but the Healthy Nacogdoches Coalition success comes from community ownership.
"You have people at the table who helped bring it here and then you have the result that's for your community," said Kinnie Douglas, Memorial Hospital Community Outreach.
More than 40 active volunteers have influenced lifestyle changes for Nacogdoches. On the list are smoke free ordinances, kids expos, restaurant eating guides, wellness fairs, and weight loss campaigns.
Health educators reminded participants of their work's far reaching impact.
"You need to think about the web of influence that we have that no matter how small, it's going to make an impact," said Cyndra Krogen-Morton, the SFA Health Science lecturer who served as the facilitator for the strategic planning event.
Other wellness efforts began. There were too many to name. A few include the park advocacy league, the dog park, trail advocates, non-profit status for the farmer's market, and more recently, a campaign to provide safety for joggers, pedestrians and cyclists.
"We know if we could make being healthy the easy choice for citizens, they're more likely to do it," Krogen-Morton. "And by easy I do mean cheaper."
Healthy Nacogdoches Coalition's momentum for healthy lifestyles is there. The challenge, as with any wellness plan, is to maintain it.
On Friday, the healthy Nacogdoches Coalition launched the 2015 Lighten Up campaign. Weigh-in stations for the weight loss plan opened today. The last two years Nacogdoches participants in the regional campaign have won new cars for losing the highest percentage of weight.