On July 28th, the AHA hosted a summer steering committee meeting of DASH-NY. Like me, you may be unfamiliar with the acronym, so I will end the suspense: it stands for Designing A Strong and Healthy New York. What is most impressive, however, is what DASH-NY stands up for: ending the obesity epidemic in New York State thought policy level change. The diverse coalition brings together local, state and regional organizations committed to providing opportunities for walking and cycling, decreasing the consumption of sugary beverages and making the healthy food choice a convenient and affordable choice in New York State. I was truly inspired by both the big picture policy advocacy being done by DASH-NY members and how local organizations are capitalizing on opportunities to put healthy policies into place.
After the meeting, I was struck by the somewhat universal truth of the phrase “stronger together” – whether inside of the American Heart Association – working with our colleagues in Quality Improvement, Community Health and Development or outside of the AHA, working in collaboration with groups like DASH-NY, much more is achieved by working together.