Guelph Wellbeing releases reports on state of food security and connectivity in Guelph

Collective impact will be greater if partners work together using data to drive action

Guelph, ON, October 15, 2014 – Guelph Wellbeing has released three important reports on the status of food security, social connectivity, and physical connectivity in Guelph. The reports—co-produced by more than 30 community stakeholders—were released last week and can be found on Guelph Wellbeing‘s website.

The reports paint a picture of life in Guelph as it relates to food security, and physical and social connectivity. They reveal 16% of Guelph households are food insecure; 90% of residents use automobiles over cycling, walking or transit; and 27% of Guelph residents don’t feel connected to their community. Along with these findings is a collective call to action with specific recommendations for improving life for residents in all three areas.

The reports also suggest Guelph is well-positioned to make these improvements, in part because Guelph Wellbeing is a platform that allows organizations to align efforts to bring about positive change in areas the community has identified as priority.

“If you are wondering what Guelph Wellbeing is or why it’s important, these reports give an excellent snapshot,” says Mayor Karen Farbridge, Chair of the Guelph Wellbeing Leadership Group. ”They provide both a status report and a call to action, and they show how we can achieve more by working together.”

The reports also highlight recommended actions community organizations and partners can take to make improvements. Examples include pooling resources; coordinating efforts to support existing programs; gathering and sharing data to develop more targeted programs; advocating for policy change; and working together to secure resources such as cold storage for vegetables to help decrease hunger in our community.

“These reports provide highlights of the great work underway in our community and the amazing people and organizations doing the work,” says Brendan Johnson, Executive Director, Guelph Neighbourhood Support Coalition. “They also tell us where the community sees the need for change. Part of the beauty of Guelph Wellbeing is in the diversity of voices at the table—organizations working together in new ways to make our city an even better, more inclusive and resilient place for everyone.”

Using a collective impact approach, the organizations involved in Guelph Wellbeing expect to make a positive change by focusing on specific actions. They will then measure progress with the intent of moving key indicators in a positive direction.

Guelph Wellbeing will release an affordable housing report later this fall, and an impact report that shows the work organizations are doing to move the needle on important wellbeing indicators in June 2015.

About Guelph Wellbeing

Guelph Wellbeing explores how to proactively, efficiently and collaboratively address our community’s needs. It is guided by the City of Guelph and a Community Leadership Team chaired by the Mayor and including City staff and twenty volunteer representatives of Guelph’s social service, healthcare, law enforcement, education, youth and business communities.

Guelph is Canada’s first municipality to align with the Canadian Index of Wellbeing, a pan-Canadian initiative focused on community wellbeing. A catalyst for new partnerships and cross-functional community initiatives, Guelph Wellbeing is attracting local, national and international attention.

For more information

Louise Daw
Project Manager, Guelph Wellbeing
Community and Social Services
519-822-1260 extension 6521
louise.daw@guelph.ca