The Good Food Box project in North Bay, Ontario is a bulk food-buying program with the purpose of supporting chronic disease prevention through the promotion of increased fruit and vegetable consumption. Good Food Box increases the accessibility of healthy, fresh fruits and vegetables for low-income individuals. Unfortunately, the Nipissing District Housing Commission, whose responsibility it was to procure funding for and employ the Good Food Box coordinator, was unsuccessful in renewing funding. Without funding, the Good Food Box program would cease at the end of June. Amy Campbell, North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit employee and member of the Good Food Box advisory committee, and the rest of the Healthy Living team grappled with what the Health Unit could and should do in such a situation. This was especially difficult considering the trajectory of the Health Unit’s programming towards more upstream interventions and the release of the new Ontario Public Health Standards (OPHS), which advocates for policy change. The broader public health context was also shifting towards more upstream solutions to food insecurity. All of this would have to be considered when determining the Health Unit’s responsibilities and approach to the Good Food Box project.
- Identify and analyze stakeholders essential to planning.
- Utilize scenario planning to brainstorm a number of potential action items for the Healthy Living team.
- Define the role of public health units in accordance with the Public Health Standards, such as the new OPHS, set to be released in 2018.
Case Study Questions
- Why is it crucial to identify stakeholder relationships that will lead to generative relationships in complex situations? How can stakeholder analysis tools such as the “STAR” model be used as a tool to perform this task?
- Why is scenario planning important for an organization undergoing a period of uncertainty and change? Why is it important to follow the detailed steps of the scenario planning process?
- After the analysis of the Health Unit’s role in the Good Food Box case, what niche do you see public health units filling within the broader health care system? Why is it important for organizations to delineate a role within a larger system and to maintain their services within these boundaries?
food accessibility, generative relationships, scenario planning, OPHS
Butti, A., Campbell, A., Love, J., Thind, A. (2018). Good Food Box: Generative Relationships and Scenario Planning in Public Health. in: McKinley, G. & Sibbald, S.L. [eds] Western Public Health Casebook 2018. London, ON: Public Health Casebook Publishing.