On Monday, October 5, 2015, Stevenson and Prairieland Elementary Schools will formally take their honored roles as model schools for Project Fit America (PFA), a national public charity dedicated to getting kids fit since 1990. This program has been funded by OSF St. Joseph Medical Center and OSF St. Joseph Foundation. Please join us for the Opening Day Kick Off and Fitness Celebrations!
Event date: Monday, October 5, 2015
Stevenson Elementary School - 2106 Arrowhead Drive, Bloomington (9:30 -10:30 a.m.)
Prairieland Elementary School - 1300 E. Raab Road, Normal (2-3 p.m.)
This is a continued roll out of the Project Fit America program which launched in 2013 at Benjamin and Oakland Elementary Schools in Bloomington. The students’ fitness testing outcomes showed an impressive 20 percent improvement in cardiovascular endurance and 15 percent improvement in abdominal core strength.
Since 1980 childhood obesity has tripled according to the U.S. Surgeon Generals’ Report. In answer to this alarming epidemic, PFA provides an action-based solution that works. PFA donates fully-funded fitness programs to schools creating new opportunities for children to be active, fit, and healthy as part of the everyday school experience.
“The partnership between our organizations will serve as a cornerstone for enduring community health and wellness. The sponsorship of Project Fit America by OSF St. Joseph and OSF St. Joseph Foundation is another example of our proactive response to the growing need for medical and wellness services in our community,” stated Erin Kennedy, Director of the Center for Healthy Lifestyles at OSF St. Joseph.
Programming includes state-of-the-art fitness equipment specifically designed to address the deficit areas where children fail fitness tests; indoor fitness equipment; a dynamic curriculum with games, activities, and challenges for kids with the PFA outdoor and indoor equipment; the program also teaches character development, sportsmanship, team work, and leadership skills. The academic emphasis is to create “physically educated” children and to empower them to take personal responsibility of their health with enthusiasm. PFA also provides support to the schools for two years along with on-site training with each physical education (PE) teacher.
“Prairieland is very excited to have been given this opportunity to enhance our physical education program,” said Jill Garneau, PE teacher at Prairieland Elementary School. “We are so thankful to have such a wonderful partnership with OSF St. Joseph and are looking forward to using the Project Fit America program in our schools for many years to come.”
“Research shows not only is physical education important for a child’s physical development, it actually helps kids read and learn math. Physically active kids are better learners. Physical Fitness has a direct impact not only on a child’s health but their academic success,” said Stacey Cook, Executive Director of Project Fit America, “We are extremely proud of OSF St. Joseph and OSF St. Joseph Foundation for their commitment to bring this program to the community and for their dedication to improving the health and wellness of children.”