Public health workers and communities will come together across the U.S. for their annual celebrations of National Public Health Week April 1-7.

This year’s NPHW has a theme of “Protecting, Connecting and Thriving: We Are All Public Health.” Organized by APHA, NPHW offers supporters across the country the opportunity to elevate public health on campuses, in workplaces and in community spaces.

“The theme this year brings us to the core tenet of public health: the public. It takes everyone working together to build thriving communities,” Lindsey Wahowiak, APHA director of Affiliate Affairs, told The Nation’s Health. “We’re centering those stories and voices throughout this year’s events.”People of different ages, diversities smile at the camera

The weeklong event brings together community members, advocates, health workers, students and others interested in public health. The week underscores the importance of the field to improve health, well-being and longevity. Over 150 NPHW events are expected to be held nationwide.

Every day of NPHW will feature a health topic participants can use as inspiration for their events. Monday will focus on civic engagement; Tuesday, healthy neighborhoods; Wednesday, climate change; Thursday, new tools and innovations; Fri­day, reproductive and sex­ual health; Saturday, emergency preparedness; and Sunday, the future of public health. 

APHA is offering a host of free online events that are open to all. For example, on Monday is a forum on ways public health professionals can collaborate with and learn from community leaders. Among the speakers is Pattie Gonia, an “eco-drag queen” who performed during Climate Week NYC. Gonia keeps things fun and insightful.

Tuesday is Student Day, featuring a session focused on graduate programs at higher learning institutions that emphasize serving minorities. On the panel will be representatives of institutions serving Hispanic, Black, Asian and American Indian students.

Two other virtual panels on Tuesday focus on early-career professionals and bringing equity to people with an intellectual disability.

“The panel on disability and equity is an opportunity for public health students and professionals to hear directly from individuals living with intellectual disability about the issues that affect them,” Lawrence Haynes, MHC, APHA’s program manager for racial equity, told The Nation’s Health.  

Also on Tuesday is APHA’s NPHW Chat live on X and Threads. Dubbed the “biggest public health conversation of the year,” the chat is an hour of collaboration and conversation with hundreds of public health organizations and leaders. Participants can check out the questions now and begin planning their responses.

Wednesday features a conversation between APHA President Ella Greene-Moton and NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson, MS, JD.

Other APHA events during the week are an overview of Public Health AmeriCorps, sessions on climate advocacy and the All of Us Research Program.

Meanwhile, APHA’s Keep It Moving Challenge, which motivates people to be active, will reach the finish line April 7. 

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