Welcome to the information hub on the Kern County Call to Action Plan. This action plan, adapted with permission from San Diego’s Call to Action:
Childhood Obesity Action Plan model, is intended to have the most influence on developing environmental and policy change supporting healthy
lifestyles, choices, and behavior change by engaging residents, community organizations, local leaders and businesses.
Recently, the Kern County Public Health Services Department received a Capacity Building Community Transformation Grant through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to further support and expand the work of the Call to Action Plan. This $2.2 million grant to be implemented over the course of the next five years, will build Kern County’s capacity to effectively promote active living and healthy eating, tobacco-free living, and high impact quality clinical and other preventive services.
Kern County Call to Action
Kern County Public Health Services Department
1800 Mt. Vernon Ave. Bakersfield, CA 93306
(661) 321-3000 CallToAction@co.kern.ca.us
Chronic disease, along with the issues of overweight and obesity, has reached epidemic proportions in Kern County.
Over 60% of the population (teens and adults) is reported as being overweight or obese. Kern County ranks highest
of the 58 California counties in deaths from heart disease and is second highest in deaths from diabetes.
Kern County also ranked in the bottom 25% for six of eight health indicators related to all causes of death (2010).
Poor nutrition and lack of physical activity significantly increases the risk and acuity of diabetes, heart disease,
high blood pressure and cancers. Secondhand smoke exposure causes serious disease and death, including heart disease
and lung cancer in non-smoking populations. According to the CDC, each year an estimated 3,000 non-smoking Americans
die of lung cancer primarily because of exposure to secondhand smoke; more than 46,000 die of heart disease.
In September 2011, in response to these critical health concerns, the County was awarded a five year Community
Transformation Grant (CTG) to support and promote active living and healthy eating, tobacco-free living, and clinical
and other preventive services. The grant provides for a “Capacity Building Project to Engage Community” through a
range of community strategies including:
- Coalition Building and Planning;
- Community Health Assessment;
- Capacity Building;
- Strengthening our Leadership Team; and
- Promoting and Educating Stakeholders about CTG program activities and a common vision for community wellness and prevention.
Kern County’s CTG supports the Call to Action: Chronic Disease and Obesity Action Plan, which incorporates the development
of core, guiding and strategic principles; maximizing health impact through prevention; and the expansion of evidence-based
services to address community health problems. The Call to Action Plan will also ensure health equity and reduce health
disparities among high-risk populations. See the Kern County Call to Action Chronic Disease and Obesity Plan for more details.
The Action Plan:
The Kern County Call to Action Plan calls for every person in Kern County to be a part of the solution. Community partners
are highly encouraged to develop additional strategies for the prevention of chronic conditions and obesity based on their
experience, abilities and the communities they serve.
The goals and objectives of the Kern County Call to Action: Chronic Disease and Obesity Action Plan include:
Goal – The fundamental goal of the Action Plan is to improve the health of Kern County residents by using a comprehensive,
multi-disciplinary approach to the problem.
The following objectives have been set to achieve this overarching goal.
- Build awareness about the risks and consequences of uncontrolled high blood pressure, diabetes, arthritis, and risk factors of inactivity and obesity.
- Serve as a guide for all County residents who are interested in addressing obesity issues.
- Use multiple strategies to build momentum and begin taking action to improve the health of Kern County residents.
- Strengthen existing partnerships and create collaborative relationships with new organizations and new sectors of the community.
- Support the adoption of individual lifestyle changes through policy and environmental change.
- Create a plan that measures and supports community partners in their efforts in meeting Call to Action objectives.
The above goals and objectives will additionally lead to the advancement of health equity and the reduction of health disparities
among identified under-served populations in the County.
The Call to Action Plan focuses on seven key domain areas, identified as having the biggest influence on both the individual and their environment, which include:
- County and City Governments
- Healthcare Systems and Providers
- Early Childhood Programs and Before- and After-School Providers
- Community-Based Organizations, Faith-Based Organizations and Youth Organizations
- Media Outlets and Marketing Industry
The Call to Action Plan requires a long-term commitment from a wide base of support to make a positive impact for the well-being of our communities.
Kern County has the ability to work together towards building healthy communities. The work ahead will not be easy, and will take time, but
through smart and hard work and countywide support and dedication, a change can be made to positively impact the well-being of our communities.
“We need to inspire agencies, institutions, families and individuals to place priority on nutrition and physical activity by
implementing proven strategies” and we will need to “bring together our resources, talent, enthusiasm and commitment to ensure a
healthy future for Kern County Children.”
- Kern County Board of Supervisors Chairman, Ray Watson November 9, 2010
The Community/Faith/Youth Based Organization Domain brings together community organizations and residents in
developing solutions that improve neighborhood food and physical activity environments. The Domain supports
community residents and local organizations in policy, systems, and environmental change to enable healthy
living. Some of the current members who serve on the Community/Faith/Youth Based Domain include representatives
from Kern Community Foundation, Pacific Health Education Center, Grimm Family Education Foundation, Community
Action Partnership of Kern, Ebony Counseling Center, Greater Bakersfield Legal Assistance, American Heart Association,
Kern County Network for Children, Catholic Charities Diocese of Fresno, Bike Bakersfield, Kern County Superintendent of
Schools, the Promotora Network, the Betty Ann Ong Foundation, the Greenfield Walking Group, West Bakersfield Optimists,
Optimist Clubs of Bakersfield College, the Dolores Huerta Foundation, WIC, and Kern County Mental Health Services.
The Community/Faith/Youth Based Organization Domain is always looking for new partners. Contact the Domain Leader if
you are interested in joining the Domain or would like to find ways to be involved in the work.
The Community/Faith/Youth Based Organization Domain has identified key strategies to prevent chronic disease and promote healthy living. These include:
- Encourage community organizations to organize physical activities to increase awareness of healthy lifestyles
- Work with community organizations to develop resident-led wellness initiatives
- Improve channels of communication between organizations to improve coordination and increase access to health and physical activity resources
- Increase the number of community organizations with certified leaders of evidence-based self-management and physical activity programs
- Empower community organizations to increase their capacity in working with existing systems to create environments supporting healthy living
- Partner with other sectors to assist in financing healthy activities
For a complete listing of the Community/Faith/Youth Based Organization Domain strategies,
please see the Kern County Call to Action Chronic Disease and Obesity Plan.
Contact Domain Leader
Boyce B. Dulan, MD
Bio: Dr. Dulan is a Preventive Health Consultant who lectures in the community and encourages community based organizations
and faith-based organizations to provide health prevention information to their constituents on a regular basis.
Dr. Dulan is also preparing an e-mail newsletter titled "HEALTH SMART" to further this work.
Tina Chapa, Executive Director at Bike Bakersfield
Bio: As Executive Director of Bike Bakersfield, Tina Chapa’s goal is to help create a sustainable community where everyone
in the community has access to a transportation system that promotes a healthy lifestyle. Riding a bike is one of the easiest
changes we can make to promote a healthy body and a healthy environment. Tina’s goal in working with the CTG grant is to help
others to see the benefits of riding a bike in our everyday lives.