During the 2011-2012 school year Urban Initiatives was a community-based grantee for the Healthy Places project, a collaborative effort between the Chicago Department of Public Health and the Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children at Lurie Children’s Hospital, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and the Communities Putting Prevention to Work Initiative.
This year, we are continuing to develop this work! Urban Initiatives’ goal is to support schools' efforts to meaningfully enhance healthy school environments and complete the HealthierUS Schools Challenge, which is known in Chicago as Go for the Gold! and part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Campaign. With the support of Urban Initiatives’ Program Associates, schools use the CPS wellness policy to examine options for improving the culture of health and wellness at their schools by taking actions such as implementing healthy fundraisers, increasing nutrition education and physical activity in the classroom, engaging parents with access to meaningful nutrition resources, and emphasizing the value of physical education.
Children spend at least seven hours each day and eat two main meals in school. Promoting healthy school environments makes it easier for children to adopt healthy lifestyles for themselves, which will boost their academic performance and enhance their quality of life as they grow into adulthood.
Through Healthy Places, Urban Initiatives is able to reach more students in the school communities we serve with the health and character messaging of the Work to Play Program. This year, each of our Program Associates will spend one full weekday at a Healthy Places school to act as an organizer and catalyst for authentic health promotion activities and events.
If you are interested in knowing more about Healthy Places please contact April Lillstrom, the Healthy Places Program manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org