To positivly and sustainably impact our community's health . environment ,social capital and economy the nonprofit Wellness Institute of Greater Buffalo and its many community partners have set a community wide physical activity goal of achieving 50 Million Steps walked/rolled in 2017 among all age groups in the BUFALO NIAGARA REGION ! With a primary focus on leading and promoting community walks and improving WALKABILITY The Institue will track and report quarterly the number of steps taken by participants in the walks that the Institute, its affiliates, community partners and friends achieve in 2017. In addition the Wellness Instiute Staff and partners will be available to comminities to train them on policy and built environment actions they can take to enhance community WAKABILITY. Wellness Institute Executive Director Phil Haberstro noted "The 50 Million+ Steps initiative,while having merit on its own, supports other community initiatves like the Erie County Department of Health"s cardiovascular health improving MILLION HEARTS CAMPAIGN ,the upcoming P2 Collaborative"s Regional STEPS initiative; IHA /BILLS Community HEALTH AND WELLNESS CHALLENGE and a wide range of community walks/runs that the Institute either leads , is a partner or supporter of. Phil added"The strategic path to a healthier community population is built on a foundation of sustainable inter-sector and inter-disciplinary collaboration and a comprehensive approach to community culture support."
Leading the collaborative way is "Explore Buffalo", a former Affiliate of the nonprofit Wellness Institute of Greater Buffalo. Explore Buffalo provides walking, biking and kayaking opportunities to discover Greater Buffalo's great architecture, history, and neighborhoods. Their mission is accomplished by providing guidance and encouragement to participants to develop their interest and skills in educating others on these valuable assets. Children are also offered the opportunity to learn about the history of Buffalo and their role in the future while offering health enhancing, social capital building, and environmentally friendly activities.
Explore Buffalo Executive Director Brad Hahn noted, "Adding up all of the people who have taken an Explore Buffalo walking tour in 2016 - currently about 17,000 - and multiplying it by an average of 3,000 steps per tour, we are currently contribiting over 36 MILLION steps! Our popular education and inspirational"WALKS" are real evidence of a community becoming healthier not only physically, but also socially, as people on our tours gain a greater appreciation of all that Buffalo Niagara has to offer."