Province invests in building healthier communities

Press Release

Aug. 3, 2023

VICTORIA – People throughout B.C. will benefit from healthier and more connected communities as the provincial government provides grants through the PlanH program to local governments and Indigenous communities.

Funded by the Ministry of Health and administered by BC Healthy Communities, the PlanH program supports local and Indigenous governments to create healthier communities through resources, practices and learning opportunities that focus on people, society and the environment.

“It takes many people working together to build healthier communities,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “The PlanH program has been supporting local and Indigenous government initiatives that promote and foster healthy lifestyles. By supporting local projects, we are investing in people and preventative health care that will allow people throughout B.C. to live healthier lives.”

This year, 33 projects will be funded for a total of $250,000 under two funding streams: Community Connectedness; and Healthy Public Policy.

The Community Connectedness funding stream is providing 18 grants for as much as $5,000 each for projects that help foster relationship-building among people in their communities. The Healthy Public Policy funding stream is providing an additional 11 grants for as much as $15,000 each for projects that will improve the health and well-being of the community by creating or updating policies. In addition, Vancouver Coastal Health Authority is providing $60,000 to fund four Healthy Public Policy projects for communities within its catchment area.

“Whether it’s eating healthier, signing up for a fitness class, or participating in policy discussions, we are eager to support communities across the province to create the conditions that facilitate healthy behaviours,” said Jennifer Rice, Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Health. “We want the healthier choice to be the easier choice, no matter where you live.”

This round of grants will help to fund a variety of projects, distributed throughout the province, including rural, urban and Indigenous communities. Some of these projects include:

  • We Grow Rainbows – establishing food security and social connectedness in Fort St. John
  • Mental Health Roundtable – discussing mental health, livable incomes and poverty reductions in New Westminster
  • Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative – focusing on creating a liveable income and poverty reduction in the Seabird Island Band
  • Revising Trail’s Community Plans – establishing a living incoming and encouraging policy participation in Trail
  • Working Together to Heal – encouraging policy participation and involvement in the Whispering Pines/Clinton Indian Band

“When we lead healthy lives, we can actively prevent chronic disease from developing,” said Harwinder Sandhu, Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors’ Services and Long-Term Care. “We can reduce the risk of health problems by supporting people to live healthy, connected and safe lives. Through nurturing, long-lasting social connections and working to create policies that serve health and well-being, every person in the community benefits.”

In addition to grant funding, PlanH provides tools, resources and capacity supports to communities, such as workshops, webinars and action guides. These resources support engagement and partnerships across sectors to support healthier communities. Examples include guides that encourage community involvement, such as adding neighbourhood-based centres for social events; developing policy to encourage safe, active travel to school and workplaces; and improving accessibility throughout the community for people of all ages and abilities.

“We’re excited about this partnership to promote healthy living within our B.C. communities,” said Jodi Mucha, executive director, BC Healthy Communities Society. “These grants enable a diverse range of people to work together to develop plans and policies that will help to improve the health of people in B.C.”

Establishing healthy and resilient built, natural and social environments through upstream efforts to prevent chronic disease is a central focus of the Healthy Communities approach. Working with regional health authorities, First Nations Health Authority, Union of BC Municipalities, BC Centre for Disease Control and the Ministry of Health, PlanH helps support health promotion provincewide.

Learn More:

To learn more about BC Healthy Communities, visit:

To learn more about the projects this year, visit:


Ministry of Health Communications
250 952-1887 (media line)


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