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Winfield awarded Iowa Walking College Fellowship

Published: Thursday, April 20, 2017 10:21 a.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, April 20, 2017 11:25 a.m. CDT
(File Photo)

Jasper County Health Department’s Public Health Coordinator is working to promote walk-ability in the community through a fellowship granted by the Iowa Healthiest State Initiative.

Kristina Winfield was chosen among 15 Iowans this month as an Iowa Walking College fellow. Winfield and the other fellows will participate in a six-month program, in which Winfield will design a health and walking related community engagement project that will strengthen the local efforts to make Newton more walkable and livable.

The Iowa Walking College was created in response to a need identified through the Collaborative Workshop on Walkable Communities in Iowa held last August to address opportunities to improve walk-ability in the state.

Winfield said Jasper County’s health assessment need showed a high rate of obesity and how important it is to stay active. She said that requires walkable sidewalks as well as handicap accessible sidewalks.

Winfield said she will be doing a working score and audit for Newton and for smaller communities in the county and will encourage new designs for better walkability.

“I am very excited, it’s great for not just Newton but for the whole county, and I can take this knowledge and apply it everywhere,” Winfield said. “I want to increase activity and accessibility in our county, which is at high risk.”

Winfield is a Registered Nurse and graduated from Allen College with a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Prior to coming to Jasper County, she worked at Unity Point Pediatric Clinic in Ankeny and has also worked in hospitals with adults and pediatrics.

The Walking College will kick off May 3 in Ames with a daylong interactive session with experts in transportation and public health, including guest Philip Bors, Technical Assistance Director at Active Living by Design.

The remainder of the program will incorporate online learning modules and a final in-person session focused on leadership. To culminate the fellow’s six-month learning experience, the fellows are invited to attend the National Walking Summit in St. Paul, Minn. in the fall.

Contact Kayla Langmaid at 641-792-3121 ext. 6533 or klangmaid@newtondailynews.com