Outmigration of residents is one of the biggest challenges confronting rural communities in Illinois. And local leaders understand the importance of providing resources and amenities that appeal to residents of all ages and backgrounds. These efforts not only improve quality of life for existing residents, but strengthen the ability of industry to recruit and retain a stronger workforce. The CCRC seeks to address three critical needs for Crawford County:
1)Address health disparities. In Crawford County, 41% of adults are obese, compared to 31% nationwide. Local residents are 39% more likely to die of a stroke. Incidents of cardiovascular disease are 35% higher than the state average and heart disease is the leading cause of death. This trend continues with disproportionate levels of high blood pressure and diabetes.
2)Provide access to recreation. A need for a space with programmed activities that bring our local communities together, strengthening relationships for people of all ages and backgrounds
3)Enhance Crawford County’s image. Helps Crawford County project an image of being a vibrant and thriving community where people are eager to work, learn, and live.
A recreation and sport center that served the entirety of Crawford County was identified as the best way to quickly address these needs.