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Belfast Healthy Cities

Our vision is that Belfast is recognised globally
as a healthy, equitable and sustainable city

Healthy Cities 21st Century

News Stories

The WHO Belfast Healthy City Awards, now in their sixth year, recognise the work of organisations and groups across the city to improve the health and well-being of the people of Belfast.

This year’s awards coincide with the 30th anniversary of Belfast being designated as a World Health Organization healthy city and applications were open to all sectors in four categories: Promoting Health Equity; Healthy Places; Healthy Living and Engaging for Change.

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The WHO International Healthy Cities Conference opened on 1 October 2018 in Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom, bringing together more than 500 delegates from 60 countries and over 200 cities. While the Conference takes place every 5 years, this year’s event has particular significance – it celebrates 30 years of Healthy Cities as a global movement and looks ahead to the next phase of work for the WHO European Healthy Cities Network.

Christine McKee, who is a Public Health Registrar with the Public Health Agency, travelled to the Netherlands between 3-7 September as part of the Healthy City Explorer Bursary.

This bursary has been offered by Belfast Healthy Cities since 2014 and allows individuals working in the field of health and wellbeing, including healthy urban planning and design, to visit another WHO European Healthy City or National Network to study their approach to addressing a key issue relating to health inequalities.

Following on from the success of the WHO International Healthy Cities Conference, Changing Cities to change the world, Celebrating thirty years of the Healthy Cites movement,held last week in Belfast, we are delighted to announce the Belfast Healthy Cities, ‘Healthy City’ 2018 awards. 

As we celebrate 70 years of the NHS and 30 years of Belfast Healthy Cities and the European Healthy Cities Network, Joan Devlin looks at the impact these organisations have had on the health of our city:

On the 5th July 1948 Labour Minister for Health Aneurin Bevan launched the National Health Service, and 70 years on it is hard to quantify the incredible impact this service has had on all our lives.  In some ways it has become a service we all take for granted. At its core it had three overarching principles, which are still maintained to this day:

The Royal Town Planning Institute Awards for Planning Excellence recently took place in London.

Belfast Healthy Cities hosted a workshop on the Scottish Place Standard Tool on Thursday 3 May at Clifton House. The one day event examined the possibility of rolling out the Scottish tool to towns and cities in Northern Ireland. 

Twenty five participants have recently completed the Reducing Inequalities: Getting Results Training Programme.  Developed by Belfast Healthy Cities with support and facilitation from Erica Ison, the training was delivered to elected representatives, health professionals, policy makers and planners from community, voluntary and statutory sectors.

The training aimed to build capacity to reduce inequalities affecting health and wellbeing; and to develop a professional network to enhance collaborative working through the following objectives.

The recent Health Literacy UK Conference saw over 100 community and health professionals from across UK, Ireland and Europe gather in Belfast to hear some of the leading world experts on health literacy.

The conference raised awareness of health literacy practice and research.  Health literacy will continue to be a theme in policy and through community interventions in public health and community planning.

Healthy Places, Healthy Children - a teaching resource developed by Belfast Healthy Cities in collaboration with the Education Authority, NI Housing Executive and PHA  - is a finalist in the category for Excellence in Planning for Health and Wellbeing at the Royal Town Planning Institute’s (RTPI) Awards for Planning Excellence 2018. The RTPI Awards are the most established and respected awards in the UK planning industry.