Several US Childhood Obesity Programs Win Grants Worth $745,000

Photo: (Photo : Unsplash/Markus Spiske)

Nine U.S. cities will receive a total of $745,000 for winning the 2021 Childhood Obesity Prevention and Environmental Health and Sustainability Awards. City mayors who have helped children and families thrive by initiating exceptional programs were awarded. 

In a press release, the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) has joined the American Beverage Foundation for a Healthy America (ABFHA) to award over $4.3 million to 54 cities of the nation. 

USCM CEO and Executive Director Tom Cochran said that mayors believe how safe, clean, and green spaces help improve children and families' health status. He also said that the ABFHA helps USCM support more cities by awarding worthy cities.

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They significantly expanded the program for 2021 to increase the amounts awarded to the winners. Each population category would have a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners. Apart from that, they have also expanded the scope of the award. 

It is meant to give mayors a greater range of environmental and sustainability initiatives as they address childhood obesity interventions. 

Large US cities

The first-place among the large cities that won $250,000 was Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms. She initiated the "Cooking with C.H.O.I.C.E.S." Community Teaching Kitchen to help families prepare nutritious meals at home. 

Mayor Francis Suarez from Miami won second place and $25,000 after starting the "Virtual Reality Recycling Program." He makes use of smartphones to let people transform art on recycling bins into a VR experience. 

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"Veggielution Youth Garden: Pathways to Health" won the third-place with cash of $15,000 because of its mission to help connect people through food and farming. It was initiated by Mayor Sam Liccardo from San Jose, California. 

Medium US cities

The medium city first place winner was Mayor Victoria Woodards from Tacoma, Washington. She got awarded $175,000 after she proposed "Recycle Reset Community Ambassadors." Her goal was to recruit multilingual who could help in promoting proper recycling and waste reduction tips. 

Fifty thousand dollars was given to Dayton, Ohio, Mayor Nan Whaley after he instituted "Dayton Sprouts." He aims to minimize carbon footprint with healthy eating choices. Camden, New Jersey, Mayor Francisco "Frank" Moran won $15,000 after placing third from establishing "Eat Wel Mobile Grocery Store" in pursuit of selling healthy food at below-market prices. 

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Small US cities 

Mayor Elizabeth Kautz from Burnsville, Minnesota, received a cash prize of $125,000 after topping the chart. She introduced "Grow Burnsville" to create more healthy eating choices for the city. 

Oviedo, Florida, Megan Sladek won second place and acquired $50,000 after starting "Healthy Hearty Habitats." Her objective is to help kids three to five years old develop fine motor skills using athletic educational programming. 

Lastly, Gonzales, California, Mayor Maria Orozco won $15,000 after placing third when she expedited the "Healthy Gonzales Initiative." Her purpose is to create a community garden where she could use the food grown to teach cooking to the community. 

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