This project page is devoted to the District’s ongoing efforts to incorporate a healthy communities lens in community planning and provides links to data and resources related to improving local health outcomes.
In March 2015, District of Squamish Council endorsed a Healthy Communities Collaboration Agreement with Vancouver Coastal Health. The agreement formalizes the relationship between VCH and Squamish local government and offers a platform for continued engagement and joint collaboration. Together the District and VCH will work on established priority health areas and projects to promote health through local policies and actions.
Early Childhood Development (ECD)
In October 2015, District Council affirmed the health, safety and well-being of children as foundational to the community and directed that an early childhood and family-focused lens be incorporated in upcoming OCP policy, bylaws, built environment and strategic planning. District will work with key stakeholders to review and bring back a Children’s Charter for consideration.
The Squamish Children's Charter of Rights was created in the fall of 2016 with the help of hundreds of children. Council endorsed the Charter on January 17, 2017. The Charter will be integrated within the Squamish2040 Official Community Plan to ensure that decisions are made in best interests of children and youth, and that children have a voice in the decisions that are relevant and impact them. Learn more about the Children's Charter.
Early Development Index (EDI)
The Early Development Instrument (EDI) is a population-level monitoring tool that measures the developmental health of the kindergarten population across the province. The EDI reports on the percentage of children who are vulnerable on one or more of the 5 scales of the EDI, illustrating the distinct differences in children’s developmental outcomes that exist across communities in BC. The EDI reflects how children’s experiences and environments in the first five years of their lives have affected their development as a whole.
For Squamish, EDI data highlights specific areas of growing concern: For Squamish North (north of Mamquam River) 32% of children are considered vulnerable on one or more developmental scales (showing meaningful increase over time between 2004 and 2016); for Squamish South, 38% of children measured through the EDI showed vulnerabilities on one or more developmental scales (recent decrease from 44% in Wave 5 between 2011-13, however no change in long term trend).
For more information on the patterns and trends in early child development for Squamish, as compared to Sea to Sky and provincial EDI rates:
Other Links & Documents
Food Systems/Food Security
Links & Documents
BC Food Systems Network Video – “Food Policy Collaborations Take Root in Metro Vancouver, Squamish and the Sunshine Coast”
Physical Activity /Active Transportation
In May 2014, the District of Squamish was one of 49 communities awarded a Healthy Communities Capacity Building Grant of $5,000. Funding support was provided from PlanH, a partnership between BC Healthy Communities Society and Healthy Families BC (BC Ministry of Health). PlanH supports local government engagement, cross-sector partnerships and collaborative local action by providing funding, learning opportunities and resources.
The Squamish Learning Lab brought health and municipal partners together to establish a healthy community partnership for mutual learning and collaboration. With Vancouver Coastal Health and other collaborators, the project team engaged in joint learning about the community context for health and well-being, partnership development, and collaborative priority setting for health and well-being in local planning and policy to influence local health outcomes.
Exploring New Tools for Applying a Health Lens to Community Planning
The project team explored several ‘tools’ for their application to the District’s upcoming OCP review and update in 2015/16.
Other tool/resources were explored to look at other community health components such as social connectedness, inclusion and equity.
The project will significantly inform the upcoming OCP update by providing baseline health data, including priority local health issues and applying a community health lens to assess existing land use plans and policies against key health outcomes. From this, the District will be able to proactively respond to the many challenges and factors influencing community health and social wellbeing and monitor the District’s policies and programs against key community health indicators and targets (to be established).
Community Health Matters event (June 17, 2015)
For more information, please contact Sarah McJannet (Planner) by email or call 604.815.5096.
February 23, 2017
District of Squamish aims to combat ‘build first ask permission later’ mentality with new surcharge
Initiating work in Squamish without a permit now comes with a costly consequence.
February 17, 2017
Squamish Murals Project aims to bring colour and creativity to public spaces
Public spaces throughout Squamish will soon be transformed into permanent works of art thanks to a new public art project...