In 2009, Fitchburg had the second highest body mass index (BMI) in MA. In reaction, Fun 'N FITchburg started making positive changes for health by building community gardens, expanding access to local farmer's markets, creating an Adopt-A-Park program for safe and accessible recreation and setting healthy vendor guidelines for park vendors. Today, Fitchburg no longer has the second highest BMI with a 10% improvement since 2009. The Adopt-a-Park program has resulted in 16 parks being audited and adopted by community groups. Construction of a new park in public housing has started and the Fitchburg Planning Department is working on adoption of a Complete Streets resolution including Safe Routes to Parks and Schools to increase active living opportunities for all residents.
In 2011 Fitchburg was awarded a research grant, Mass in Motion Kids, focusing on children 2-12, to reduce childhood obesity among underserved children. As part of the study, Fitchburg is incorporating evidence-based interventions in primary health care, child care and schools/after-school programs.
Montachusetts Opportunity Council
This information is provided by the Department of Public Health.