FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE & NATIONAL DAIRY COUNCIL KICK OFF RENEWED COMMITMENT TO YOUTH HEALTH & WELLNESS
National Foundation on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition to Join Partners’ ‘Hometown Grants’ Program to Boost Physical Activity and Nutrition in Schools
DENVER, CO. (September 7, 2016) – As part of their efforts to improve youth health and wellness, the NFL and its partners today announced a renewed commitment to the “Hometown Grants” program. Developed by the NFL and Fuel Up to Play 60 in 2014, the initiative provides grants to support physical activity and nutrition programs in school districts in all 32 NFL markets. This year, the National Foundation on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition will join the partnership, which to date has provided nearly $1 million to schools across the country.
“We are pleased to renew our commitment to the Hometown Grants program, which has been an important part of our work to improve the health and wellness of youth,” said ANNA ISAACSON, NFL senior vice president of social responsibility. “We look forward to continue working with our 32 clubs and our partners to make sure all kids have the chance to ‘PLAY 60’ and empower them to lead healthy lives.”
The renewed commitment will be announced today at an event at Allendale Elementary School, where the partners will present officials from Colorado’s Jefferson County School District with a $10,000 Hometown Grant and $30,000 in additional equipment and resources for its student programs and facilities. The event will feature:
A special appearance by singer, songwriter and founder of the M.A.D. Kids program JORDIN SPARKS;
A PLAY 60 clinic led by Sparks, former Denver Broncos LB KARL MECKLENBURG, Broncos mascot MILES and Broncos cheerleaders; and
An assembly with more than 200 students focused on the importance of healthy eating and staying active.
Through the Hometown Grants program, NFL teams and state/regional dairy organizations identify deserving schools in their communities to receive funding to help facilitate sustainable physical activity and healthy eating programs for students. Since 2014, the program has provided more than 700 schools with funds and resources, resulting in more than one million students staying physically active and making healthier food choices.
“Mobilizing communities to advocate for and implement healthy changes in schools nationwide requires collaboration at the local and national level,” said MARK LEITNER, executive vice president, Fuel Up to Play 60. “Fuel Up to Play 60 is making an impact in schools through the unwavering support of the NFL and leaders like the National Foundation on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. Working together we are able to empower students, teachers and entire communities to go from zero to sixty every day by fueling up with nutritious foods and being physically active for at least 60 minutes.”
This year, the National Foundation on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition will join the partnership and provide resources, such as assessment software, training tools, and student recognition, to enable schools to implement the Presidential Youth Fitness Program, the nation’s youth fitness education and assessment program. The donation is being made as part of the Foundation’s #0to60 campaign honoring the 60th Anniversary of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition., which yesterday launched the new “#0to60” anthem, featuring Sparks, in partnership with Sparks’ M.A.D. Kids program.
“The Foundation is proud to join the NFL and Fuel Up to Play 60 to improve the health and well-being of our nation’s youth through the Hometown Grants program,” said CHRIS WATTS, executive director, National Foundation on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. “We’re also excited to engage with health and wellness leaders, like Jordin Sparks, to empower students to be fit for life.
To join Fuel Up to Play 60 and learn more about the program, please visit www.FuelUpToPlay60.com.
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About Fuel Up to Play 60
Fuel Up to Play 60 is an in-school nutrition and physical activity program launched by National Football League (NFL) and National Dairy Council (NDC), which was founded by America’s dairy farmers, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Fuel Up to Play 60 is designed to engage and empower youth to take action for their own health by implementing long-term, positive changes for themselves and their schools. The program additionally encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods (low-fat and fat-free dairy, fruits, vegetables and whole grains) and achieve at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. As a result of the program, last year 14 million students made better food choices and are getting more physically active during the school day. Fuel Up to Play 60 is further supported by several health and nutrition organizations: Action for Healthy Kids, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Academy of Pediatrics, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Association/Foundation, National Hispanic Medical Association, National Medical Association and School Nutrition Association. Visit FuelUpToPlay60.com to learn more.
About NFL PLAY 60
Designed to encourage kids to get active, NFL PLAY 60 brings together the NFL's long-standing commitment to health and fitness with partner organizations. Since PLAY 60 was launched in 2007, the NFL has committed more than $250 million to youth health and fitness through programming, grants, and media time for public service announcements. The NFL and its teams have constructed more than 175 NFL Youth Fitness Zones and integrated programs into more than 73,000 schools since the campaign launched. NFL PLAY 60 is also implemented locally, as part of the NFL's in-school, after-school and team-based programs. For more information, visit www.NFLRUSH.com/play60.
About National Dairy Council
National Dairy Council (NDC), the non-profit organization founded by dairy farmers and funded by the national dairy check off program, has been committed to research-based nutrition education and communications since its start in 1915. NDC is dedicated to bringing to life the dairy community’s shared vision of a healthy, happy, sustainable world – with science as its foundation. NDC’s staff of registered dietitians, researchers, and nutrition experts promote dairy’s role as part of a balanced diet, as well as educate people about the farm-to-table, table-to-farm connection. NDC has helped launch groundbreaking programs to benefit the health and wellness of children and adults, including Fuel Up to Play 60, which encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods and achieve 60 minutes of physical activity each day. NDC has also helped launch the Future of Food Partnership and The Great American Milk Drive, which both address food insecurity in America. For more information, visit www.NationalDairyCouncil.org and www.DairyGood.org and follow NDC on Facebook and Twitter (@NtlDairyCouncil).
About National Foundation on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition
The National Foundation on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition believes that the strongest America is one where every citizen has the opportunity to lead a healthy lifestyle. As the official foundation of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition, the National Foundation is the only congressionally chartered nonprofit with the sole focus to help more Americans be active, play sports & eat healthy. Through private donations and partnerships, the Foundation supports programs and initiatives that educate, engage, and empower Americans of all backgrounds and abilities to adopt a healthy lifestyle. For more information, visit fitness.foundation.
Catherine Boyle, NFL
Christina Smith Marion, Fuel Up to Play60
Meredith Aronson, National Foundation on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition