Kristie Daniel is the contact for our Livable Cities program.
The Livable Cities program improves the quality of cities by ensuring access for the most vulnerable to healthy transportation, healthy foods, parks and public spaces.
More than half the world’s population is living in towns and cities. As more people move to urban areas the quality of life in cities has major impacts on health and the environment. Low and middle-income countries, in particular, are facing important challenges as a result of the growth of cities.
Studies show that the way cities are built impacts people's:
- Risk of non-communicable diseases (NCDs)
- Risk of injury
- Exposure to air pollution
- Vulnerability to the effects of climate change
- Ability to be gainfully employed
- Ability to interact and build relationships with neighbours.
As low and middle- income countries tackle these major problems, it is important to ensure that cities are livable.
A livable city is well designed and compact. It allows people to walk to school and work, to stores, parks and restaurants. It permits them to take transit to places outside of their neighbourhoods, and provides them with access to sanitation, water, clean air, safe affordable housing and healthy foods.
A livable city also ensures that everyone has access to parks and public spaces. It is a place where everyone, including women, children, the poor, and people with disabilities are able to meet their day-to-day needs and enjoy community life.
The work we do to improve the livability of cities has resulted in some key impacts on the health and wellbeing of people in vulnerable situations around the world. Our work with local partners in advocating for healthy, safe and accessible public spaces has resulted in major policy decisions that have improved people’s communities. Impacts from our work include improved parks for women, children, and people living with disabilities, safe pedestrian and cycling spaces, and the preservation of fresh markets. The ultimate result of our work is healthier, happier people, safer cities, improved air quality and access to decent work.