Claiborne County is Working to Become a Healthier Tennessee Community\

NASHVILLE – The Governor’s Foundation for Health and Wellness today announced Claiborne County has been named a candidate for official designation as a Healthier Tennessee Community.

Healthier Tennessee Communities are those that encourage and enable more physical activity, healthy eating and tobacco abstinence at the local level. The program takes a community-wide approach to improving Tennesseans’ health by engaging the local leaders of cities, towns, counties and neighborhoods.

“The health of our local communities affects us in so many ways – from feeling well enough to put in a productive day’s work to how able our kids are to learn, from the cost of medical care to how well and how long we live.  Change Claiborne’s achievement of the initial $5,000 Healthier Tennessee Communities grant clearly shows that this citizen-led effort is making a positive difference in the Claiborne County area.” Kayla Smith, regional director, Governor’s Foundation for Health and Wellness.

In Tennessee, one in five adults smoke, and one in five high school students use tobacco. Approximately 34 percent of the population is classified as obese and an additional 34 percent are overweight, and type-2 diabetes and high blood pressure are at near epidemic levels.

“Our primary goal for Change Claiborne is to help all residents of Claiborne County achieve healthier and more active lives.” Alan Reece, Change Claiborne Chairperson. In keeping with this goal, Change Claiborne plans to install Water Bottle Refill Stations in both of Claiborne County’s Primary Schools. These Water Bottle Refill Stations will provide safe, clean drinking water and the knowledge to make better beverage choices.

To be designated an official Healthier Tennessee Community, Claiborne County must identify wellness champions to lead the initiative that engages people in workplaces, schools and faith organizations, and then work to initiate and sustain community-wide events and activities that support physical activity, healthy eating and tobacco abstinence.

The community is expected to track and measure outputs and accomplishments of the program. They have one year to complete their work. Change Claiborne has received a $5,000.00 grant from The Governor’s Foundation to help reach these goals.

The Governor’s Foundation launched the Healthier Tennessee Communities initiative in March 2015 with nine pilot communities. Today, 104 communities are engaged with the program and 59 have already received the designation.

Cities and counties interested in becoming Healthier Tennessee Communities should contact the Governor’s Foundation for Health and Wellness at or (615) 610-1880.

More information on the program and other Healthier Tennessee initiatives is available at


About the Governor’s Foundation for Health and Wellness

The Governor’s Foundation for Health and Wellness is a non-profit corporation dedicated to enabling and encouraging Tennesseans to lead healthier lives. Based in Nashville, the Foundation brings together a statewide coalition of employers, health insurers, hospital systems, local governments, school systems and healthcare-focused foundations and community organizations to effect positive, measurable change. The Foundation’s Healthier Tennessee initiative strives to increase the number of Tennesseans who are physically active for at least 30 minutes five times a week, promote a healthy diet, and reduce the number of people who use tobacco.

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