Government has launched a five-year action plan to get Nova Scotians moving more and sitting less.
Let’s Get Moving Nova Scotia will help to create a more active, inclusive and healthier population across the province through education, improved access to funding and partnerships with the private and public sectors.
An Active Communities Fund is also being created to make it easier for communities to apply for physical activity funding by rolling some existing programs, such as After the Bell and Facility Access, into the new fund. This new grant program will open for applications next spring.
“We are ushering in a new era of active living that will focus on increasing physical activity in all aspects of life for Nova Scotians of all ages and abilities,” said Communities, Culture and Heritage Minister Leo Glavine.
“To help people be more active in their everyday lives, they need more opportunities to be active in their communities, workplaces and schools. We recognize the benefits of healthy, active living and the links to improving our quality of life, our health and the vibrancy of our communities.”
The action plan involves a co-ordinated approach to reach out to people in places where they spend most of their time, including where they live, work, study or play.
Let’s Get Moving Nova Scotia will address inactivity and sedentary behavior by building on existing networks, partners, initiatives and facilities that currently support physical activity.
The action plan will address gaps and enhance existing investments by supporting current strategies and commitments.
Actions in year one include:
supporting workplaces to be more physically active to help increase productivity and decrease absenteeism
introducing a before and after pilot program for pre-primary supporting municipalities and Mi’kmaw communities to address their unique needs through additional funding and training addressing barriers and developing new opportunities by creating more welcoming and inclusive environments for under-represented groups
“Incorporating physical activity during our day is of fundamental importance to our physical and mental health,” said Dr. Robert Strang, chief medical officer of health. “By creating supportive environments, this action plan will build more opportunities for Nova Scotians to move more, sit less and be healthier.”
Partnerships will be developed with the Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) and the Nova Scotia Public Service Commission to promote a more physically active workplace to help improve productivity, employee engagement and reduce absenteeism.
“We’re very pleased to support this initiative,” said WCB CEO, Stuart MacLean. “We all spend many hours at work and staying active while we are there is an important part of workplace health. At work, at home and in between, the more active we are, the healthier we are as a province – and that’s good news for everyone.”
The action plan is aligned with the federal Common Vision for Increasing Physical Activity and Reducing Sedentary Living in Canada: Let’s Get Moving, the Canadian guiding document which was launched in May 2018.
Nova Scotia is the first jurisdiction to release an action plan in response to the Common Vision.
More information about Let’s Get Moving is available at Novascotia.ca/letsgetmoving .