Change Our Outcomes, a walk for change, will have its first event Saturday, Oct. 23, at 12 p.m. The event is a health and physical activity initiative geared toward Black women on campus. Dianna Johnson-Ward, well-being support manager at Ohio University, created the event and will be leading it as well.
“Public health is near and dear to me for several reasons,” Johnson-Ward said. “The health of Black women, in particular, is something that I’m very passionate about.”
Johnson-Ward recently began working at OU and decided it was the perfect time to get Change Our Outcomes off the ground. The initiative is a form of preventative health for everyone, especially Black women, who statistically have terrible outcomes with almost all chronic illnesses.
The kick-off event will start at Peden Stadium, 200 Richland Ave. Johnson-Ward hopes the event will not only be a health event but a social one as well.
“I’m hoping that it’s more of a social thing, '' Johnson-Ward said. “It’s not anything overly complicated, just more of a social gathering to talk about this very salient issue.”
Walk leader, Re’Aija Grice, a junior studying exercise physiology, is excited for the event. She hopes the event will teach college students that their actions now will affect their futures.
“I’m really excited to see a lot of people come out and support, and just learn about the different ways to get active and stay active in the community,” Grice said, “as well as learn about the different resources that there are on campus to help you stay active and lead you down the right path so that we can decrease the morbidity and mortality rates within the minority/African American community.”
As a walk leader, Grice will be helping to carry on the initiative past the kick-off event. She, along with the other walk leaders, will be creating groups to go on daily walks.
COVID-19 social distancing precautions will be in place during the kick-off event and weekly walks.
Many students are excited to have a group to walk with and to experience the changes they are seeing within OU’s atmosphere thanks to events like Change Our Outcomes.
“I’m very excited about this event, but not only am I excited about the event, I am proud of Diana for making a change in our community already,” Deja Pulley, a junior studying marketing, said.
The walk event is open to everyone, and event leaders are looking forward to meeting the attendees. Johnson-Ward asked that everyone register before the event using the registration link.