Strategies

Policies and programs that work

107 Strategies
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Adult vocational training

Support acquisition of job-specific skills through education, certification programs, or on-the-job training, often with personal development resources and other supports
Scientifically Supported
  • Employment

Alternative fuels initiatives

Support alternative fuel and vehicle use via financial incentives (e.g., tax benefits, rebates, etc.), mandates (e.g., consumption targets or renewable fuel standards), research and development investments, etc.
Expert Opinion
  • Air and Water Quality

Ban the Box

Prohibit criminal history questions on job applications and postpone background checks
Mixed Evidence
  • Employment

Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS)

Match disadvantaged or at-risk youth with volunteer mentors in school or community settings
Some Evidence
  • Community Safety
  • Education

Breastfeeding promotion programs

Provide education, information, counseling, and support for breastfeeding to women throughout pre- and post-natal care
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Bridge programs for hard-to-employ adults

Provide basic skills (e.g., reading, math, writing, English language, or soft skills) and industry-specific training with other supports; also called occupationally contextualized basic education programs
Expert Opinion
  • Education
  • Employment

Car seat incentive & education programs

Educate parents and caregivers about proper use of car seats and reward parents and/or children for correct use
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

Career pathways programs

Provide occupation-specific training for low-skilled individuals in high-growth industries, with education and supports, usually with stackable credentials and work experience opportunities
Expert Opinion
  • Employment

Carpool & rideshare programs

Help commuters share transportation through informal arrangements between individuals, formally arranged dynamic ridesharing programs, or other ride-matching services
Expert Opinion
  • Air and Water Quality
  • Housing and Transit

Child bicycle helmet promotion programs

Promote child bicycle helmet use via bicycle safety education, media campaigns, or provision of free or subsidized helmets
Scientifically Supported
  • Community Safety

Community fitness programs

Offer exercise classes (e.g., yoga, Tai Chi, cycling, etc.) and fitness program support in community centers, senior centers, fitness, and community wellness centers
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Community kitchens for food processing

Establish shared kitchen spaces that support licensed, commercial food processing and connect specialty food processors, farmers, and others who produce value-added goods
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Community kitchens for nutrition education

Use existing kitchen spaces for community members to share knowledge, resources, and labor to prepare, cook, and consume food, often with nutrition education provided for participants experiencing food insecurity
Insufficient Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Community supported agriculture (CSA)

Establish partnerships between farmers and consumers in which consumers purchase a share of a farm’s products in advance
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Community weight loss challenges

Support temporary programs that work to energize participants to lose weight via prizes, often combined with education, weight status and food intake tracking, regular check-ins, and group support
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Community-based social support for physical activity

Build, strengthen, and maintain social networks that provide supportive relationships for behavior change through walking groups or other community-based interventions
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Community-wide physical activity campaigns

Engage a variety of partners in a highly visible, multi-component effort to increase physical activity, often with efforts to address cardiovascular disease risk factors
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Competitive pricing for healthy foods

Assign higher costs to non-nutritious foods than nutritious foods via incentives, subsidies, or price discounts for healthy foods and beverages or disincentives or price increases for unhealthy choices
Scientifically Supported
  • Diet and Exercise

Condom availability programs

Provide condoms free of charge or at a reduced cost in community and school-based settings
Scientifically Supported
  • Sexual Activity

Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP)

Support the federal-state partnership that pays participating land owners an annual rental rate for removing environmentally sensitive land from production and introducing conservation practices on the land
Some Evidence
  • Air and Water Quality

Conservation tillage practices

Encourage methods of soil cultivation that keep at least one-third of cultivated soil covered with the previous year’s crop residue (e.g., mulch till, ridge till, strip till, or no-till)
Scientifically Supported
  • Air and Water Quality

Consumer-directed health plans

Establish high deductible health plans paired with pre-tax medical expense accounts such as Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs) or Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and information tools
Mixed Evidence
  • Quality of Care

Debt advice for tenants with unpaid rent

Offer debt advice from trained providers to tenants with unpaid, overdue rent to help repay debt and increase financial literacy
Some Evidence
  • Income
  • Housing and Transit

Designated driver promotion programs

Encourage use of designated drivers via population-based mass media campaigns, incentive programs based in drinking establishments, and other efforts
Insufficient Evidence
  • Alcohol and Drug Use

Electronic Benefit Transfer payment at farmers markets

Enable farmers markets to accept EBT, the electronic payment system of debit cards used to issue and redeem Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)

Provide confidential worksite-based counseling and referrals to employees to address personal and workplace challenges
Some Evidence
  • Employment
  • Family and Social Support

Farm to school programs

Incorporate locally grown foods into school meals and snacks, often with visits from food producers, cooking classes, nutrition and waste reduction efforts, and school gardens
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Farmers markets

Support multiple vendor markets where producers sell goods such as fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, dairy items, and prepared foods directly to consumers
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Financial education for adults

Provide one-on-one or group adult education programs that cover topics such as basic budgeting, bank use, credit management, bankruptcy, credit building and counseling, homeownership, retirement, divorce, etc.
Insufficient Evidence
  • Income

Financial rewards for employee healthy behavior

Offer payments, credits toward health insurance premiums, or other financial rewards to encourage employees to lose weight, eat more healthily, quit smoking, engage in physical activity, etc.
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Flexible scheduling

Offer employees control over an aspect of their schedule through arrangements such as flex time, flex hours, compressed work weeks, or self-scheduled shift work
Scientifically Supported
  • Employment

Food buying clubs & co-ops

Offer opportunities for group purchase and distribution of selected grocery items, generally at a reduced price
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Food hubs

Support businesses or organizations that aggregate, distribute, and market local and regional food products (e.g., fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, dairy, grains, and prepared items)
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Fruit & vegetable gleaning initiatives

Gather food left in fields after a primary harvest, food in fields where harvesting is not profitable, or excess produce from orchards, packing houses, urban agriculture sites, etc.
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Fruit & vegetable taste testing

Offer samples of fresh fruits and vegetables in cafeterias, nutrition classes, school gardens, or workplace well-being meetings, often as part of a multi-faceted nutrition intervention
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Healthy food in convenience stores

Encourage convenience stores, corner stores, or gas station markets to carry fresh produce and other healthier food options
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Healthy food initiatives in food pantries

Combine hunger relief efforts with nutrition information and healthy eating opportunities, often with on-site cooking demonstrations, recipe tastings, produce display stands, etc.
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

Healthy foods at catered events

Provide more fresh fruits and vegetables, smaller portions, low fat, and reduced sodium or reduced sugar food options and other healthy foods at catered events
Expert Opinion
  • Diet and Exercise

Healthy vending machine options

Increase healthy options in vending machines by reducing the price of healthy choices, increasing the number of healthy choices compared to unhealthy choices, etc.
Some Evidence
  • Diet and Exercise

HighScope Perry Preschool model

Provided high quality preschool with home visiting to low income, African-American children with an emphasis on active learning in Ypsilanti, Michigan
Some Evidence
  • Education

Housing trust funds

Support funds that help create or maintain low income housing, subsidize rental housing, and assist low income homebuyers and non-profit housing developers
Expert Opinion
  • Housing and Transit

Individual incentives for public transportation

Offer incentives such as free or discounted bus, rail, or transit passes, reimbursements, partial payments, or pre-tax payroll deductions to encourage individuals’ use of existing public transit
Some Evidence
  • Housing and Transit

Integrated pest management for indoor use

Support a four-tiered approach to indoor pest control that minimizes potential hazards to people, property, and the environment
Scientifically Supported
  • Housing and Transit

Intergenerational communities

Create communities that promote interaction and cooperation between individuals of different ages and focus on the needs of all residents, especially children and older adults
Expert Opinion
  • Family and Social Support

Intergenerational mentoring

Establish a relationship between an older adult and an at-risk child or adolescent; programs are often based in schools, community centers, or faith-based organizations
Expert Opinion
  • Family and Social Support