NEW VicHealth chief executive Sandro Demaio will work in regional Victoria regularly as part of an effort to ensure Victorians are leading the most healthy life they can.
Top of his list for the future is working with local governments, members of parliament and community groups to reduce child and adolescent obesity.
"Roughly two out of three Bendigo citizens aren't getting as much exercise as they can," Dr Demaio said. "What really concerns us is the high rates of child and adolescent obesity across Victoria.
"It's something we plan to closely on with Bendigo council and other councils around this area but also, most importantly, community groups, mums, dads and even kids themselves.
"We want to try and make easier for young people to achieve good health and maintain it across their life."
Since taking on the CEO job two months ago, Dr Demaio has toured regional Victoria to get up to speed on regional issues.
"We are spending a day a week in regional Victoria," he said. "So far we have visited Echuca, Swan Hill, Ballarat, Geelong and Bendigo.
"(VicHealth) works with incredible communities to help get people more active, eating better food, giving up smoking, having a little less alcohol and, hopefully, living a better life.
"In Bendigo we have funded a number of things. A big focus has been making sure sporting clubs are safe and welcoming places for girls and women."
While in Bendigo this week, Dr Demaio visited community groups including Multicultural Arts Victoria and Bendigo District Aboriginal Co-operative.
"Multicultural Arts Victoria run their Emerge Hub where they are using a number of arts-based activities to include and give a platform to migrant families," Dr Demaio said.
Dr Demaio said BDAC facilities were impressive.
"At BDAC, we're funding a program around looking at the drinking cultures in young men," he said. "BDAC ahve amazing programs and we want to support them in what they do well.
"It's challenge across all society, consumption of alcohol and risky drinking. BDAC came to us and said they would love to work with us in addressing that. They have an amazing facility, something that is a benchmark for Victoria and, probably Australia."