Lake County SHIP Initiatives

Two Harbors is a Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP) community.

Here are just a few ways SHIP is helping make the healthy choice the easy choice:

Landscaping? Make it tasty!

When you’re surrounded by tasty produce–it’s easy to eat healthy! Learn about the edible landscape project at the Clair Nelson Center in Finland, MN. 

Work and School are Good Places to Start

A worksite wellness pilot project in Two Harbors set the tone for others in the Arrowhead region to look at the health practices of workers in various work settings. Because of this, people are stretching, walking, and eating well while they are at work because policies and environments improved to make the healthy choice the easy choice.

The Lake Superior School District works closely with SHIP to bring healthy eating and active school day opportunities to students through strategies, wellness policy, and grant writing/research. For example:

Support for the Minnehaha Elementary School Kinder Garden!Several kindergarteners proclaim, "Best day ever!"

When you have great teachers, partnerships fall into place! Read more about Minnehaha’s new Kinder Garden.

Planting the Seed!

Ripening apple (350x175)Both ends of the large Lake Superior School district have gardens and fruit trees. Dedicated food service staff are also learning how to use local produce in new recipes through a USDA Farm to School grant. Students and staff can cast their votes in taste tests. Some of the favorites have been: local apples, beet hummus, and blueberry oat bars!

This Farm to School grant has also helped purchase needed equipment and provided for farmer visits and field trips to Wolf Ridge.

Live Well Lake County

Many organizations and people across the county value health and well being. Live Well Lake County’s leadership group is a network that includes a variety of people and organizations to collaborate and raise awareness about healthy opportunities in Lake County. A solid network, like Live Well Lake County, allows for strategic coordination, the leveraging of resources, and streamlined communication to advance policies, systems and environments that impact the health and wellness of the citizens of Lake County.

In addition to projects above, SHIP can provide assistance to garden coordinators, farmers’ markets, teachers, cities, and others who are trying to help people become more active and eat healthy through sustainable policy, system and environmental change. This can include grant writing or connecting the dots in the county so people here can help each other. SHIP may also help with a few fun things, as well, like walking clubs, and harvest fests!

Hungry for Data

Live Well Lake County has learned that many grant opportunities are connected to the Educational Benefits form, which is the form school district families are asked to complete in order to get free/reduced lunch for their children. Many families are eligible to receive free/reduced lunch but they don’t complete the form. We are encouraging people to complete it! Completed forms increase our data which helps qualify our district and are agencies with more opportunities for grants that benefit us all. Learn more here.


Tracy Gilsvik is coordinating Lake County’s SHIP efforts.  She can be reached through the contact form below or by phone: 218-834-8520.