The Barry Community Foundation and other local leaders have joined forces with Blue Zones to begin a countywide well-being transformation in Barry County through the Blue Zones Activate program. Blue Zones uses scientifically proven lessons of longevity, health, and happiness to boost the well-being of entire communities.
Barry County is proud to be the first community in Michigan to partner with this innovative approach to increase community health and wellness. Blue Zones Activate is based on research and principles developed by Dan Buettner, National Geographic Fellow and New York Times bestselling author, who identified the cultures of the world—or blue zones—with the healthiest, longest-living populations.
Blue Zones focuses on the single largest determinant of our health: the place we live. By focusing on the places where people live, work, learn, and play, Blue Zones has been able to help communities move the needle in improving overall population health and reducing healthcare costs in hundreds of places around the country. The innovative strategy is built on the foundation of improving food and built environment policies that impact public health and health inequalities to increase the availability of healthy choices within the community
By optimizing the places where people spend most of their time, Blue Zones Activate helps communities with policy initiatives to create environments where healthy choices are easier and accessible to everyone. As a result, people can live longer and better, and communities can lower healthcare costs, improve productivity, and boost their city's national recognition as a great place to live, work, and play.
The Barry Community Foundation is the lead partner, with primary sponsorships from the MTC Community Fund, Spectrum Health Pennock, and Hastings Fiberglass, and supporting sponsorships from Highpoint Community Bank, Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, the DeCamp Foundation, Barry Community Foundation, Barry Eaton District Health Department and Barry County.