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Healthcare Georgia Foundation Announces Childhood Physical Activity and Nutrition Grant Program

                                                           

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 CONTACT:
  Kristina Heuman
Porter Novelli
kristina.heuman@porternovelli.coml
404-995-4522
 

              Foundation Supports School and Community-based Health Initiatives for Georgia Youth

Atlanta, Georgia – October 6, 2005 – Healthcare Georgia Foundation announced today the availability of approximately $1 million in grant support over the next three years for school and community-based programs to increase physical activity and improve nutrition among children and youth in Georgia. Through this new Childhood Physical Activity and Nutrition Grant Program, the Foundation continues its commitment to addressing the serious issue of childhood overweight and physical inactivity among Georgia’s youth.


Nearly 30 percent of Georgia middle school students and 25 percent of the state’s high school students are overweight or at risk of becoming overweight. Preventing children from becoming overweight and promoting a healthy lifestyle requires a balance between eating nutritious meals and engaging in developmentally appropriate physical activity, yet only 59 percent of the state’s high school students and 68 percent of middle school students exercise at least 20 minutes a day for three or more days per week.


“The Foundation’s new grant program aims to engage communities and schools to help us find solutions that work for Georgia’s youth,” says Gary Nelson, president of Healthcare Georgia Foundation. Providing support to schools and community-based organizations in Georgia for in-school, before school and after school programs serving children, the Foundation’s Childhood Physical Activity and Nutrition Grant Program allows for the greatest impact on the largest number of youth.


The mission of Healthcare Georgia Foundation is to advance the health of all Georgians and to expand access to affordable, quality healthcare for underserved individuals and communities. “This grant initiative furthers the goal of the Foundation by improving the overall health of Georgia’s children and youth,” says Nelson. “Physical activity and nutrition have benefits beyond losing weight and preventing chronic diseases. Preliminary evidence from California shows that active children do better in school and have fewer behavioral problems.”


Healthcare Georgia Foundation announced the new grant program as the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine (IOM) convenes a regional symposium in Atlanta on the role that local communities play in addressing the issue of childhood obesity. In collaboration with Healthcare Georgia Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the IOM symposium is being held at Georgia Tech Oct. 6 – 7, and features plenary panel presentations and discussions facilitated by health experts from across the country.


According to Overweight and Obesity in Georgia, 2005, a report published by the Georgia Department of Human Resources, youth living outside metropolitan Atlanta are at significantly greater risk of becoming overweight. For this reason, the Foundation will provide grants only to organizations serving children who live outside metropolitan Atlanta.


More information about the grant program, including application details and specific deadlines, can be found in the complete funding announcement for the Childhood Physical Activity and Nutrition Program grant available on Healthcare Georgia Foundation’s Web site (www.healthcaregeorgia.org). For additional information, applicants should contact Healthcare Georgia Foundation directly at (404) 653-0990.

 

About Healthcare Georgia Foundation
Healthcare Georgia Foundation is a statewide, private independent foundation. The Foundation’s mission is to advance the health of all Georgians and to expand access toaffordable, quality healthcare for underserved individuals and communities. Through its strategicgrantmaking, Healthcare Georgia Foundation supports organizations that drive positive change, promotesprograms that improve health and healthcare among underserved individuals and communities, andconnects people, partners and resources across Georgia. For more information, please visit the Foundation online at: www.healthcaregeorgia.org.


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