Community takes steps to foster resiliency, well-being in families

Editor’s Note: MAPP (Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships) is a local process that aims to use and build upon our strengths to improve our individual, family, and community health. Health is defined broadly to include cultural, economic, educational, environmental, mental, physical and spiritual health.  


MAPP is a roadmap or process for aligning our local community efforts around health improvement goals.  Our community has chosen increasing family well-being as the priority goal for the next few years.  Building resiliency in families increases their well-being. 

So what steps can we take to build resiliency? 

One way to be a resilient family is to have family members that are physically and mentally well.

We are all more able to deal with the stresses of life when we take care of our mind and body. How do you take care of your mind and body? How can we support one another in doing this? 

Our community offers many ways in which to support physical and mental well-being. In addition to our amazing landscape and the well-being that it provides, our community has a rich offering of parks, indoor and outdoor recreation, visual and performing arts, educational programs, cultural events and festivals. 

These offerings contribute to our physical and mental well-being by providing an outlet to exercise, develop relationships with others, learn new skills, foster our sense of belonging, and much more. 

Since having family members that are physically and mentally well is a priority factor for family resiliency, how can we ensure that all families can access these offerings? 

This question is being asked this month by the Parks Art Recreation and Culture (PARC) needs assessment.  The community input to this assessment will help determine the value of PARC activities to the greater Homer community and identify potential resources and strategies to sustain and grow these services so that they are available into the future and accessible to all. 

Do you value and use parks, arts, recreation and culture facilities and programs? What additional offerings are needed? What prevents you from accessing existing PARC activities? You can share your input to these questions through a PARC needs assessment survey. 

The survey will be available through the end of November and can be done online at or through paper surveys available at City Hall, the Homer Library, Community Recreation office in the Homer High School Commons, and Homer Council on the Arts.  

You also can attend the Thursday, Nov. 13, PARC community meeting at the Alaska Islands and Ocean Visitor Center to hear and discuss initial results of the survey. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the meeting begins at 6 p.m.  For questions about the PARC needs assessment or meeting, contact Julie Engebretsen at 435-3119 or More information also is available in a flier in today’s Homer News.

To quote Minnesota Sen. Paul Wellstone, “We all do better when we all do better.” 

If we eat well, sleep well, exercise, recreate and spend time doing things we enjoy, we are more able to support others in doing the same.  Park, Arts, Recreational and Cultural offerings in our community give us the opportunity to take care of ourselves and others. PARC contributions are an investment in individual and family well-being, thus are an investment in the whole community. 

Let’s see how we can make these available to all so that we can all do better.

Megan Murphy is the MAPP coordinator and can be reached at 235-0570 or

Community Meeting

About Parks, Arts, Recreation, Culture

wHEN: 5:30 p.m. open house; meeting at 6 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 13

Where: Alaska Islands and Ocean Visitor Center

WHY: To learn more about the preliminary results of the PARC online survey, focus groups and research that’s been done.

TO take the survey:


Paper copy: Pick up at City Hall, the Homer Library, Community Recreation office in the Homer High School Commons, and Homer Council on the Arts