Mission: Healthy Parks Healthy Person changes the lives of Tennesseans by encouraging and rewarding participation in healthy outdoor activities.

Vision: We envision a Tennessee with the healthiest and happiest citizens who get outside regularly to enjoy our lakes, rivers, mountains, and natural assets.

Photo Credit: Juliane Liebermann

The How and Why of Healthy Parks Healthy Person

Time outdoors is a proven treatment for many of the physical and mental health issues that we face in Tennessee today.

We need the anti-stressors of nature, sunlight, and Vitamin D now more than ever.  This treatment is free, readily accessible, and begins working immediately!  How can we work together to collectively get Tennesseans utilizing the outdoors to treat depression, anxiety, ADD, chronic diseases, and obesity?  What tools and resources do we have in Tennessee that we can use to make it easy for people to take their health in to their own hands…and to take it outdoors?

The Department of Health and Tennessee State Parks realized that our parks are conduits for health.  That leisure time and recreation time outdoors is essential to our wellbeing.  So together they created Healthy Parks Healthy Person TN to draw more people outdoors and into Nature.
Healthy Parks Healthy Person is an incentive and reward program aimed at getting Tennesseans outdoors.  We use technology, an app, to allow Tennesseans to log outdoor activity at ANY park in TN…this is important to note…even though the program is through Tennessee State Parks, we advocate for people to get outdoors in any park, greenway, or natural area in TN.  We recognize that TN is consistently at the bottom as far as health outcomes across the nation, and we know that time spent outdoors has enormous health benefits.  HPHP encourages Tennesseans to take their health in to their own hands and get outside to create new, healthy habits utilizing our park systems.  With 56 state parks, and countless city and county parks and greenways, there are thousands of miles of trails, walkways, and waterways for citizens to experience the outdoors and engage in physical activity at no cost.  (Side note: Tennessee is one of only seven states that offer free entry for State Parks.  We are incredibly lucky to have this resource!) 
HPHP is grant-funded through generous grants from the TN Dept of Health.  We run the day-to-day operations of the program and fund the Rewards from these grants.  Because we are limited in our funding, sometimes we must amend or alter the Rewards program in order to keep it going and serving the most users.  Our hope is that eventually the appeal for an extrinsic reward falls away, and that our users create lifelong habits and receive intrinsic rewards.  For more information on the HPHP program, visit our Terms and Conditions Page.