EMRC recognised for providing heart healthy initiatives

Published on Monday, 30 October 2017 at 12:00:00 AM

The Eastern Metropolitan Regional Council (EMRC) has received National and State recognition on the 1 September, from the Heart Foundation for two initiatives; the '#ride2market' and the 'Swan River Ramble'.

The EMRC is the recipient of the Heart Foundation's National Innovation category for the Swan River Ramble project and received a Highly Commended acknowledgment in the State Heart Foundation Local Government Awards for the combined Swan River Ramble and #ride2market initiatives. The Heart Foundation Local Government Awards recognise and showcase councils working to improve heart health through building a sense of community, encouraging people to be physically active, be smoke-free and make healthy food choices.

The Swan River Ramble is an exciting new activity for walkers, recreational cyclists and families to enjoy. Colourful path signage and QR codes have been installed to highlight attractions along the Swan River recreational shared path. A fictional character named Eric directs people around the river and has been designed as a fun way for children and families to enjoy everything the Swan River has to offer. "Using and promoting the existing recreational shared path around the Swan River, this project demonstrated EMRC's collaborative approach to delivering regionally significant projects across several local government boundaries. In total, 14 QR codes were placed around the Swan River each directing participants to answer a question about the location they are currently in" EMRC CEO Mr Schneider said.

#ride2market is a series of companion events supporting and enhancing existing local farmers and hawker markets in Perth's Eastern Region by providing bicycle valet services and $10 market voucher incentives to encourage cycling for transport. Commencing in 2015, the events have attracted hundreds of "everyday" bicycle riders and unearthed different styles of bikes to cater for transportation purposes. From trailers that transport kids and pets, to bikes with front and rear baskets to carry home market goodies, #ride2market has encouraged people to choose bicycles over cars as a healthy way to get around Perth's Eastern Region.

Mr Peter Schneider said the highlight of the #ride2market events was the number of children who rode their bicycles with their parents to the markets.

"Perth is well-known for its recreational road cyclists and this is evidenced by the majority of participants to the markets being "everyday" bicycle riders, in particular parents and their children, meaning the bicycle valet was full of small children's bikes. This was a great visual reminder that drivers need to be aware of children riding on the roads. The EMRC is committed to ensuring Perth's Eastern Region is a great place to live, work, play and do business and a big part of that is ensuring that our communities are supported and encouraged to lead happy and healthy lives. These initiatives encourage the next generation to participate in walking and cycling that will not only ensure their own health but will also lead to more diverse and sustainable transport behaviours in the future" Mr Schneider said.

Swan River Ramble was delivered in consultation with the Town of Bassendean, City of Bayswater, City of Belmont, the City of Vincent and Main Roads WA. The #ride2market was delivered in collaboration with the Kalamunda Farmers Markets, Maylands Hawker Markets, Mundaring Sunday Markets, Old Perth Road Markets, Stirling Square Markets, Perth's Autumn Festival, Bike Week, with support from WestCycle and the Department of Transport.

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