Home 9 Get Involved 9 Health Equity in Regional Planning

Help provide crucial input to identify issues and opportunities and guide the development of the NEK’s New Regional Plan with a focus on centering equity…

3 overlapping circles describing NVDA's guiding principles for a new Regional Plan. Green on the left with the word Sustainability. Blue in the middle with the word Equity. Yellow on the right with the words Community Empowerment.

What is the opportunity? 

Following our first session on March 12th, NEK partners are being invited to participate in focus groups being planned throughout the Kingdom by the partners described below.

What is the overall project purpose, process, goals and funding source?

A grant from the Vermont Department of Health enabled the Regional Planning Commissions, including NVDA, working together in collaboration with health partners, to draft a Health Equity Toolkit. Health Equity is achieved when everyone has a fair and just opportunity to attain their highest level of health. This Toolkit serves as a guide for communities to introduce the concept of health equity and incorporate it into municipal planning documents and bylaws.

Who is hosting?

This is a partnership between NVDA, the NEK Collaborative and Northern Counties Health Care.

NVDA’s mission is to serve the 55 communities and three counties of the Northeast Kingdom. As the Regional Planning Commission, NVDA assists municipalities, organizations, committees and individuals with a wide variety of planning and technical services. From assisting municipalities with regulatory options, to administering grants, creating maps, and implementing transportation and natural resource plans, NVDA is actively working with land use issues in the region.

The NEK Collaborative’s mission is to improve the quality of life for all residents of the NEK through coordinated economic and community development.  Our vision is a strong, vibrant Northeast Kingdom where we all thrive. Our Operating Principles

  • Non-partisan Leadership: We accomplish this through seeking to understand, asking difficult questions, and taking risks.
  • Systemic Change: We accomplish this through long-term thinking, planning, and accountability.
  • Regional Unity: We accomplish this through cross-sector collaboration, diversity, equity, and inclusivity

Northern Counties Health Care’s mission is to provide high-quality, accessible, patient-centered health care.  Our vision is that we are a key partner in building healthy families and thriving communities.  As part of our commitment, NCHC serves as the Backbone Organization to several cross-sector health equity partnerships throughout our NEK service area including NEK Prosper! Caledonia + Southern Essex Accountable Health Community and Vibrant ONE (Orleans & Northern Essex) Accountable Health Community.

What will be done with this information?

A summary of community outreach projects will be included in a final Health Equity report and shared back with the Vermont Department of Health, and lead regional planning commissions. All reports are to remain internal documents, however they are expected to help inform future health equity efforts across the state. Learn more here: