Arenac County is a beautiful place with many recreational opportunities. It also faces many health challenges.
“There are resources available, but they need to be used,” says Bobbe Burke, member of the Arenac Community Funds Committee and Arenac County Board of Commissioners.
She has noticed that obesity, poverty, and smoking are some of the bigger health issues in the area.
“You have to get early intervention,” she says, explaining that the habits of the families need to change, and that they need to start early by educating children and youth about how to make healthy decisions.
Luckily, here at the Bay Area Community Foundation, there is a fund specifically set up to grant to health programs in Arenac County.
The Arenac County Healthy Youth/Healthy Seniors Fund has recently supported programs to help educate about safety with the use of 911, healthy eating habits, and exercise; heart rate monitors to Standish Sterling Schools; physical education equipment; and the Girls on the Run program.
“We try to be a resource for early intervention or to help seniors in need,” Bobbe says.
All of these grants help to educate the young people of the community, get them more active, and allow them to grow up to become healthier adults.
Certainly much more can be done to strengthen the Health and Wellness sector, but it will take a community effort. As Bobbe says, “We’re standing at the ready to help people.”