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October 28, 2019

For Immediate Release

Roanoke, Virginia — On October 8th, the Institute for Public Health Innovation’s (IPHI) HEAL (Healthy Eating Active Living) Cities and Town’s Campaign awarded HEAL recognition to six Virginia cities and towns for their commendable efforts to improve their communities’ physical activity and food environments.

The annual Virginia Municipal League conference is an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of HEAL Campaign members and connect with new municipalities interested in joining the Campaign. The HEAL Campaign provides technical assistance at no cost to municipal leaders to help them create healthy and prosperous communities by adopting HEAL policies and practices. Cities and towns join the HEAL Campaign by passing a HEAL resolution that outlines HEAL policy and practice goals to create communities where all residents can make healthy choices to eat nutritious food and be physically active.

Each year, the Campaign recognizes new member municipalities and cities and towns that advance to higher HEAL recognition levels by achieving their healthy eating and active living goals. This year’s honorees included:

  • The City of Lexington and Surry County received recognition for passing a HEAL resolution and joining the Campaign.
  • The Town of Scottsville and The Town of Ashland received Bronze recognition for incorporating HEAL goals in a recent comprehensive plan update and a workplace wellness program to incentivize staff wellness through fitness classes, educational activities, and monetary rewards.
  • The Town of Dumfries and the Town of Wytheville received Platinum HEAL Recognition, the highest HEAL achievement award. Cities and towns that advance to the Platinum level have attained Gold status and are able to provide evidence that their healthy eating and active living work reaches across government departments and is being evaluated and monitored.

Since launching the Campaign in 2012, the HEAL Campaign has grown to 68 members across Maryland and Virginia. For more information about the Campaign and how to join, please visit

About the HEAL Cities & Towns Campaign:

The HEAL Cities and Towns Campaign provides free technical assistance to local government leaders to help them create healthy, prosperous communities by adopting policies and practices that improve their communities’ physical activity and food environments. HEAL is a project of the Institute for Public Health Innovation, in partnership with the Maryland and Virginia Municipal Leagues and funded by Kaiser Permanente, founding partner.

About the Institute for Public Health Innovation:

IPHI develops multi-sector partnerships and innovative solutions to improve the public’s health and well-being across Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.  Our work strengthens health systems and policy, enhances conditions that promote health, and builds community capacity to ensure equitable health opportunities for all.  IPHI is one of over 40 public health institutes across the country and a member of the National Network of Public Health Institutes.  For more information on IPHI, see, and follow IPHI on Facebook and Twitter @InstitutePHI.