Wednesday, 7 April 2010

April 7: Looking at Urban Health - Updated

April 7 is U.N. World Health Day which kicks off a week of global events based around an annual theme. 2010's focus: urban health.

WHO/Anna Kari
This year's campaign is called "1000 Cities, 1000 Lives". The global goals of the campaign are:

* 1000 cities: to open up public spaces to health, whether it be activities in parks, town hall meetings, clean-up campaigns, or closing off portions of streets to motorized vehicles.

* 1000 lives: to collect 1000 stories of urban health champions who have taken action and had a significant impact on health in their cities.

More info can be found at the WHO's World Health Day 2010 website.

Some 'factoids' about urbanization from the WHO's Healthy Urbanization site:

- in 2007 the number of people living in urban areas hit 50% for the first time. By 2030 that number is expected to reach 60%.

- of urban dwellers, about 1 billion live in slums.
Point Douglas
Of course, you don't have to look to the furthest reaches of the globe to find aspects of unhealthy city life.
Siloam Mission: Inner City Challenge 4
2004 data shows that 31% of Manitoba children are overweight or obese. Factors such as mental illness, homelessness, youth violence just to name a few can make even our fair city a pretty unhealthy place for many.

- 1000 Cities social media site
- Some media coverage in advance of World Health Day

- Global urban health resource links

- World's 1000 largest cities (we're #716 !)

Cities, World Leaders Mark World Health Day - Kaiser

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