Virginia Walkability Action Institute

The Virginia Walkability Action Institute (VWAI) works with local and regional teams to create policy, system, and environmental (PSE) changes in local communities. The goal is to increase access to physical activity, with a focus on walking and walkability. Members receive training and technical assistance, both in-person and virtually. Teams develop a detailed action plan to pursue a policy or system change to improve walking, biking, taking public transit and using micro-mobility devices (e.g. e-scooters) in their communities.

Virginia Department of Health (VDH), in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant (PHHS).

The VWAI is facilitated by a cadre of national and statewide faculty and supports the Surgeon General’s Call to Action on Walking and Walkability and Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd Edition. The VWAI also supports Virginia’s collective efforts to create neighborhoods and environments that promote health and safety through walking and bicycling (Healthy People 2030). Participating individuals and teams are engaged through multiple methods (e.g., didactic, experiential, discussions, etc.) within a structured and practical learning atmosphere. The VWAI consists of in-person and distance learning modules, on-going technical assistance, and special project funding.

Now Accepting 2023 Cohort Applications!

Virginia Department of Health (VDH), in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and  Prevention’s (CDC) Preventive Health and Health Services Block Grant (PHHS) seeks applications for the VWAI 2023 cohort. 

2023 VWAI Informational Webinar: October 3rd @ 11 am ET

Sign-up to join us for this free, one-hour session where prospective applicants can ask questions and learn more about the VWAI, including:

  • Application process;
  • Timelines;
  • Eligibility;
  • Participant responsibilities, and;
  • Program outcomes.
Register for the Informational Webinar

The 2023 cohort will mark the fifth year of the VWAI. The primary goal of the VWAI is to prepare local and regional practitioners to pursue policy, systems, and  environmental (PSE) changes and interventions to improve population health and reduce chronic disease risk and burden through increased access to physical activity and active transportation. The VWAI will expose participants to learning concepts that support equitable achievement of micro- and  macro-level infrastructure strategies in an effort to increase access and physical activity at the local level.

2023 VWAI Application Overview
2023 VWAI Application

Alumni Special Projects

As part of the Virginia Walkability Action Institute, teams and individual members plan and complete a special project aimed at improving access to walking, cycling, public transit, and micro-mobility devices in their community. Below are a few special project examples from our most recent cohort.

Public Workshops

In addition to the core curriculum offered exclusively for VWAI cohort members, the VWAI also offers a free monthly workshop series that is open to all residents and practitioners in Virginia. Our next workshop series will run from November 2022 to August 2023 and all workshops will be offered in a virtual format. The 2022 Workshop Series recordings are available to watch!

Upcoming Workshops

Our 2022 VWAI Public Workshop series has ended. Our next series will begin in November 2022. Be the first to hear when the 2023 Public Workshop is announced and sign up for our Virginia Walkability Action Institute newsletter!

Get the 2023 Public Workshop Series Announcement!

Workshop Recordings

We also record these public workshops. Recordings from past workshops are posted below:

How to Engage

The VWAI coordinates one cohort each year.

The application period for the 2023 cohort is open!

VWAI Contact: