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Share your smile, not your space

Social media campaign promotes being active while social distancing

YOUNGSTOWN — The Healthy Community Partnership-Mahoning Valley has launched a“Share Your Smile, Not Your Space!” outdoor activity challenge.

“Because of the COVID-19 crisis, parks and green spaces are some of the few places that people are able to go to while we are staying safe at home and practicing physical distancing. Parks and green spaces offer residents opportunities to participate in activities that help improve mental and physical health, and we’re seeing many people take advantage of these opportunities,” Sarah Lowry, director of the HCP-MV, Community Foundation of Mahoning Valley, said.

To encourage social distancing, the Parks and Green Spaces action team created the “Share Your Smile, Not Your Space!” challenge. Residents are encouraged to go outside to capture photos or videos of themselves enjoying their favorite outdoor activities while practicing safe distancing. These photos and videos can be shared by posting on HCP-MV’s Facebook page with the hashtag #shareyoursmile.

“‘Share Your Smile, Not Your Space’ came about to encourage people to go outside, be active and do something they enjoy to exercise and de-stress. But the contest also strives to amplify what we are hearing from public health officials about the necessity to practice physical distancing to keep ourselves and our families safe and stop the spread of COVID-19,” Lowry said.

By sharing these photos and videos, residents will be eligible to participate in a drawing for $50 gift cards to local grocery stores. The deadline to enter the drawing is May 15.

In addition to the challenge, HCP-MV created a health and wellness resource guide. These resources and activities aim to help residents be safe and active while staying at home.

The guide “is a tool to respond to the reality that our lives are changing quickly. Many individuals and families have been significantly impacted by the crisis, job loss, school closures, etc., (and) having information about what direct support programs are out there and how to access them is critical to ensure residents can meet basic needs like having food for themselves and their families,” Lowry said.

The guide provides information on food distribution efforts and other food access resources, location of parks and suggested safe outdoor activities as well as some adapted online / indoor activities. It also includes information about positive mental health practices or direct service resources to assist with stress, anxiety and depression.

“These resources in the guide allow individuals to create new routines and find some stability in a world that has been scary and full of uncertainty,” Lowry said.

bshiller@tribtoday.com

Online

The Healthy Community Partnership-Mahoning Valley Health and Wellness Resource Guide can be accessed online at hcpmaho

ningvalley.com/covid-19-resources.

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