The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is continuing its commitment to improve the health and wellness of the people of the province. In 2006, it released Achieving Health and Wellness: Provincial Wellness Plan for Newfoundland and Labrador .
The Wellness Plan focuses on improving the health of the population at the front end of the health spectrum: the goal is to keep people healthy through the promotion of initiatives and support for people and communities. It builds on the foundation of partners, policies, programs and resources and reflects forward thinking needed to effect change in people, communities and policies within a supportive environment. Healthy Communities are those where people work together to support each other. They are the foundation on which the wellness priorities are addressed; key initiatives that support healthy communities include Regional Wellness Coalitions, Provincial Wellness Grants, Baby-Friendly NL and the Healthy Built Environment.
The Wellness Plan reflects a shared responsibility and partnerships for wellness amongst many government departments, regional government structures, provincial and community organizations and individuals.
The Wellness Plan is closely linked to the Poverty Reduction Strategy (2006) which provides a comprehensive and practical approach to prevent, reduce and alleviate poverty to further strengthen the ability of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians to participate in their communities and lead healthier lives. Annual funding of $1.09 million to the Kids Eat Smart Foundation to provide healthy meals and snacks for school age children is an example of an initiative making a real difference by increasing access to healthy food for the children of our province.
The Wellness Plan pays continued attention to the social determinants of health, particularly those that help to reduce the inequalities in health. Efforts are made to reach those in greatest need and to build the capacity of communities and individuals to identify and address their own needs.