Ever Active Communities
Ever Active Communities is an initiative of Ever Active Schools that responds to localized, community-based well-being needs. In this model, Ever Active Schools formally partners with communities/municipalities to enhance the well-being of their citizens across the lifespan.
What are Ever Active Communities?
Ever Active Communities are partnerships formed with municipalities or community leadership to provide sustainable support for well-being within the community. This involves hiring staff who live and work in the community to promote health in ways that benefit the unique local context. Partnerships with local schools and school divisions are central to this.
We strive to provide local leaders with resources to build strong collaborative relationships that connect local knowledge, practices and teachings with expertise at the regional and provincial levels. We focus on developing local capacity and building a sense of community identity and pride through three elements:
Programs and Practices
We develop and expand health promotion initiatives that respond to community needs.
We engage and partner in research and evaluation projects that advance the outcomes of each community, while also demonstrating and sharing our progress and learnings.
Through the work of Ever Active Communities, we prioritize:
- School-level programming that reduces local and specific barriers to physical activity and recreation for priority populations;
- Investing in local leaders through capacity building opportunities; and
- Community-level programming to reach the greatest number of local citizens of all ages.
Since 2021, our projects and initiatives in the Ever Active Communities of Enoch Cree Nation, Medicine Hat and Montreal Lake Cree Nation have reached more than 42,000 individuals* and over 50 schools.
*these may not be unique individuals
The Ever Active Communities model takes an Assets Based Community Development approach:
Key principles of the Assets Based Community Development Approach include:
- Everyone has Gifts: Each person in a community has something to contribute!
- Relationships Build Community: People must be connected for sustainable development.
- Citizens at the Centre: Citizens must be viewed as actors - not as passive recipients.
- Leaders Involve Others: Strength comes from a broad base of community action.
- People Care: Listening to people's interests challenge myths of apathy.
- Listen: Decisions should come from conversations where people are truly heard.
- Ask: Generating ideas by asking questions is more sustainable than giving solutions.
Current Ever Active Communities
We are grateful to the communities and local partner organizations of our existing Ever Active Communities for the experience, passion and knowledge they bring to this exciting opportunity for community-based work.