When the Health Committee of Partners for Progress of Greater St. Charles (PfP) asked our team to determine the feasibility of establishing a transformative community-wide health initiative in St. Charles County, the group wanted input from the community about the best way to move forward.

In particular, the leaders wanted to know what the community thought about what health issues the initiative should address and how, to gauge the support for this type of initiative, and to learn whether PfP and other organizations could successfully implement an initiative.

Our consultants researched established community health initiatives in Minnesota, Oregon, West Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Closer to home, our team conducted interviews, distributed an electronic survey, and facilitated four group meetings, reaching about 300 people for input. We identified specific practices, partners and activities that would lead to success, as well as noted pitfalls to avoid.

Based on our recommendations and the input of key members of the community, Partners for Progress is moving to the next step of adopting the Blue Zones Project, a nationally recognized, evidence-based community health initiative.