Background: VicHealth invited Victorian organisations to apply for grants to support the physical and mental health of Victorians. Healthy Greater Bendigo was successful in their submission to VicHealth and provided a grant of 50,000 dollars to implement the Health is everyone’s Business – Leadership Activation Project (LAP).

Background of Greater Healthy Bendigo: Healthy Greater Bendigo is a partnership of local organisations, groups and individuals that want our community to be healthy and well. Healthy Greater Bendigo and its partners work together to leverage the strong relationships in our community and take a systems approach to preventing chronic disease by addressing the systems, structures and environments that impact the health behaviours and outcomes of our population.

The goal of Healthy Greater Bendigo is to make it easy and normal to eat well and move more.

Project Purpose: This project involves engaging and supporting local leaders to see health as everybody’s business, understand the co-benefits of healthy eating, physical activity and social connection, the complexity of the systems influencing them and opportunities to affect them, and use their spheres of influence to champion an environment where it is easy and normal to be healthy and where communities can recover from the pandemic and are more resilient to future shocks. By then linking these leaders together and celebrating and supporting their efforts through a Wellbeing Ambassador Network, we aim to generate momentum for more people to get involved, amplifying the pace of positive change in our community.


  1. Engage key leaders and leadership development providers who influence key sectors and target groups
  2. Co-design and trial capability building program/opportunities for existing leaders to champion prevention (tailored to context)
  3. Co-design and trial approaches and materials to influence leadership development programs/opportunities to build the capability of emerging leaders and young people to champion prevention (tailored to provider and to tie in with existing opportunities)
  4. Establish a Wellbeing Ambassador Network to highlight and celebrate the involvement of leaders and link them together
  5. Monitor and adapt throughout the course of the trial, including examining other opportunities to activate leadership across the community
  6. Evaluation of approach and celebration of achievements to build further momentum


  • Community gardens leadership across settings (churches, neighbourhood houses, early years and schools). Leverages existing engagement with and support for leaders from Kalianna school to expand their influence to other leaders. Involves CG event and establishment of CG network.
  • La Trobe University Engineering, tech, maths, IT. Working with course leaders to embed health is everybody’s business / health promoting capacity building activities within courses, creating a group of young engineers etc who use their influence to champion prevention.
  • Voices of children – supporting additional local leaders with opportunity to shape the lives of children to participate in training provided by Deakin University (add-on to Local Govt partnership grant)
  • Other potential participants: Bendigo Pandemic relief and recovery committee, Bendigo Youth council, Be. Bendigo, Yo Bendigo Team, Bendigo Education Council, Bendigo TAFE



  • Co-design: Co-design is the act of creating with stakeholders specifically within the project design development process to ensure the results meet their needs and are usable.


Example of leadership activation project in action:

  • Kalianna food garden and the development of a Bendigo Food Gardens Network