Students at Santiago Creek School received a $500 grant to investigate why their community has the second highest childhood obesity rate in California. The students will be trained as “nutrition advocates,” setting up food and fitness fairs for local youth groups. The grant is from UnitedHealth Group.
UnitedHealth Group awarded $5,000 in grants to eight Southern California organizations seeking to develop programs to help prevent childhood obesity in their communities. The grants will help create community-based programs that encourage healthful habits among Southern California residents.
“This is a fantastic program and I commend United Healthcare for this wonderful service for California parents and children,” said California State Assembly Speaker John Perez, D-Los Angeles. “Study after study has confirmed that healthy and fit children are healthy and fit learners. The rates of childhood obesity are skyrocketing in California, and I applaud any efforts to keep children active. ”
An Orange County Health Needs Assessment conducted in 2005, identified that 70-79.5% of Santa Ana’s adult residents are overweight.
In 2005, the California Endowment granted millions to several agencies in six cities to fight childhood obesity. Santa Ana was one of the cities targeted. Local organizations and agencies that received grant money to fight childhood obesity included Latino Health Access (lead agency), the Santa Ana Unified School District, and Orange County Health Care Agency. Other partners included: the City of Santa Ana Parks and Recreation Agency; Kaiser Permanente;, Santa Ana College (Dept. of Athletics); Cal OPTIMA; UCI Community Clinic; SOS Community Clinic; and Hoag Memorial Hospital.