Igniting Conversations

We ignite conversations and build connections statewide. 


By bringing people from different perspectives together, we see a truer picture of what needs to be done to improve health. 

Toward that end, here are some of the convenings we've supported.


This 2013 event gathered 350 public health professionals and community-based health advocates to experience what authentic engagement looks and feels like. The event also helped participants learn how to use engagement to create vibrant, healthy communities across our state. It included the opportunity to discover and try best practices, and to think together about transforming community health. 


In 2015, the Center helped bring together more than 500 leaders in agriculture, education, health and hunger sectors to focus on increasing access to healthy food for all Minnesotans. The 2015 event also saw the launch of the Minnesota Food Charter Equity Guide, a document focused on access to affordable and safe food for all Minnesotans. The Food Access Summit also saw the emergence of the Minnesota Food Charter Network, a statewide network rooted in Minnesota Food Charter strategies that supports and fosters shared action toward healthy food access for all. Other summit focuses included speakers and workshops that provided participants with leadership development and food policy tools, training and strategies to make Minnesota's food system healthier. 


For more than a decade, the Center has been inviting elected and government officials at all levels to better understand how their decisions about community design and transportation infrastructure carry profound health implications for their constituents.  Working with groups such as the Urban Land Institute, the Regional Council of Mayors and various professional societies for engineers and planners, we bring in national experts to prompt deeper conversations and encourage shared learning. Through these efforts, participants better understand how decisions that contribute to health promotion and vibrant environments also result in thriving, economically sustainable communities.


In  2012, the Center brought together more than 400 health professionals across the state to engage them in creating change across the food system to increase healthy eating. As a result, we've seen nurses, doctors and registered dietitians leveraging their roles as experts in health and leading policy and systems change in their communities. 


Co-founded by the Center in 2012, this group of Minnesota-based funders makes informed, coordinated and strategic investments to improve key facets of the food system. This diverse group of funders:  

  • Shares information about promising programs, organizations, issues and research.
  • Coordinates funding among members to ensure resources are well distributed across organizations and initiatives focused on food systems in line with the Minnesota Food Charter.
  • Increases overall funding available for food systems-related work.
  • Convenes meetings for Minnesota’s funding community on relevant issues of interest around food systems and philanthropy.
  • Making Healthy Choices Possible for All Minnesotans

    The Center for Prevention at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota tackles the leading causes of preventable disease -- tobacco use, physical inactivity and unhealthy eating -- to increase health equity, transform communities and create a healthier state.