By Laura Steele, Director of Education Programs
BikeWalkKC’s education team is one of several organizations involved in developing a Kansas City regional physical activity plan (KCPA). We were first invited to participate by colleagues from the Center for Children’s Healthy Lifestyles and Nutrition (CCHLN) in 2019, and work continues as we collaborate with other active living, transportation, and community partners.
The plan focuses on the 6 counties that make up the majority of the Kansas City metropolitan area: Jackson, Clay Cass and Platte Counties in Missouri and Wyandotte and Johnson Counties in Kansas. The regional plan takes it cue from the National Physical Activity Plan (NPAP) with the goals of:
- raising awareness of the importance of physical activity in this region
- convening a multi-sector coalition to advocate for priorities
- developing a “Kansas City Regional Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth (KCPA Report Card” with publicly available data
All of these will result in a framework for community implementation projects as early as 2021.
The KCPA report card is part of a comprehensive evaluation on the state of physical activity in the Kansas City Metropolitan region. The goal of the KCPA report card is to document the rates of physical activity, sedentary behavior, and environmental and policy factors which affect physical activity among children and youth, and to establish an initial report which will be updated on a regular basis.
There are multiple societal sector work groups, and the Infrastructure work group is co-lead by Laura Steele, BikeWalkKC’s Director of Education; Maggie Green, KCMO Public Works; and Matt Kleinmann, Weighing In Research Assistant. The full work group is composed of professionals in the land use design and transportation areas as well as infrastructure.
The work groups are prioritizing strategies and tactics outlined by the NPAP based on how well they would best improve rates of physical activity in the Kansas City region. They are also considering other missing or as-yet named priorities to improve our community’s rates of physical activity. The ultimate goal is to improve health, prevent disease and disability, and enhance the quality of life for all KC residents.
The work of the past year will be presented on September 10th at the KC Physical Activity Summit. This is a half day, online event engaging with partners from across the various sectors that impact physical activity in Kansas City. Keynote remarks are from Kelly Cornett, MS, Health Scientist on the Translation and Evaluation Team in the Physical Activity and Health Branch of the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
If you would like to get involved you can
- Visit to the KCPA Plan Website for an overview of the project by Dr. Robin Shook
- Join a Sector Work Group
- Attend the Physical Activity Summit
If you have additional questions or would like to know more about the KCPA and/or the Infrastructure work group, contact Laura Steele, firstname.lastname@example.org.