April 14, 2024

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Group hopes to amplify Mission’s approach to health and fitness

Canadian Health and Fitness Institute identifies ‘teamwork opportunities’ for Mission

The Canadian Health and Fitness Institute (CHFI) wants to help amplify Mission’s ability to get active.

CHFI president John Weston presented as a delegation to council on Jan. 22 to talk about physical, mental and spiritual health for Mission citizens.

“Our commitment is to work with you — not to dictate, not to try and suggest where you can send your energies because you’re already doing so well. We want to come alongside and amplify the successes,” Weston said.

Weston outlined some of the interconnected challenges young people throughout the country face, including anxiety, depression and a lack of physical activity.

CHFI is a charitable foundation dedicated to working with communities and Weston hopes for more work with Mission going forward.

“Our goal is to make Canada the fittest nation on Earth by 2030. The idea is to change Canada’s culture — do something dramatic like JFK did when he created the Peace Corps in 1961,” he said.

Weston highlighted Mission’s success in coming together to be physically active in the past for the ParticipACTION Community Challenge.

In 2023, the city finished first in the province and ninth in the country in minutes tracked for the ParticipACTION Community Challenge. However, ParticipACTION announced both the overall and provincial winners on July 25 and Mission wasn’t included.

“One of the things that I’m particularly interested in is how can we take the activity we inspire there during that period and inspire it on a more sustained basis,” Mission Mayor Paul Horn said.

Weston has met with city staffers before, including Coun. Carol Hamilton. Hamilton hopes the city can incentivize seniors to get out and be more active.

“I think it’s really important for us to reach out to the baby boomers who are aging and have senior activities,” Hamilton said.

Weston identified five “teamwork opportunities” that the city can participate in. The opportunities included the activity index — an effort to use data to improve decision-making around parks and recreation.

He says Mission could also take advantage of a pair of events, Nation Health and Fitness Day in June and National Indigenous Physical Activity Awareness Week.

Another opportunity included amplifying Mission’s ParticipACTION success with the “Let’s Move Canada” challenge.

The last teamwork opportunity was the “home run” of a National Adventure and Innovation Centre somewhere in Canada.

“[This] is a place to educate the educators, instruct the instructors and coach the coaches. The Green Municipal Fund is eager to write a cheque to support the municipality that partners with us on creating the centre,” Weston said.

Weston said he previously looked at potential sites for the centre in Mission with city staffers.

READ MORE: Mission can’t break Barriere to become B.C.’s Most Active Community