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2/23/2012
Oregon Wellness Champions take up the Obesity Challenge
The Oregon Department of Education's Child Nutrition Program is excited to announce that $250,000 has recently been awarded to 35 different Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) sponsors in Oregon.

Background: The USDA Food and Nutrition Service awarded CACFP Child Care Wellness Grants to 14 states for the improvement of health and wellness in child care settings. The Oregon Department of Education Child Nutrition Program received $500,000 for a three year project to implement, support and sustain best practices related to childhood obesity prevention through nutrition and physical activity initiatives in the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP). Half of the USDA grant ($250,000) was to be awarded though mini-grants to Oregon child care sponsors. The Grant Period: November 30, 2010 through December 31, 2013.

Awards in Oregon: A wide variety of CACFP child care sponsors submitted mini-grant successful proposals to the ODE Child Nutrition Program. These CACFP sponsors support emerging Wellness Champions in childcare centers, Head Start programs, family daycare home providers and after school programs. They represent programs from as far north as Hermiston and Portland and as far south as Reedsport and Klamath Falls. There are grantees along the Willamette Valley and in eastern Oregon as well. Together mini-grantees provide services to Oregon parents and their children from infancy through age eighteen.

These emerging champions have each demonstrated some success in implementing practices in one or more of the following key Wellness Champion strategy areas:

  1. Increasing the amount and variety of fruit and vegetable consumption.
  2. Increasing access to and consumption of healthy beverages.
  3. Increasing accommodation for breastfeeding for children under age one.
  4. Eliminating screen time.
  5. Increasing the amount of adult-led structured physical activity.

Over the next 15 months each of these programs will implement their own identified activities to support the strategies that they have chosen to address. A key resource in implementing these stratiegies are resources on ODE's Child Care Wellness Warehouse at http://www.ode.state.or.us/search/results/?id=380 . The warehouse is full of information for educators, families and the community and ODE encourages any interested person or agency to access this valuable resource.

A unique aspect of the mini-grant activities, is that each sponsor has identified methods to serve as peer educators in their communities. These peer education activities will encourage and support other community child care providers in implementing activities that support practices in one or more of the Wellness Champion strategies listed above.

The ODE Child Nutrition Program staff looks forward to the learning and sharing that will result from these mini-grants. We anticipate that these funds and the wellness activities that occur will encourage and support healthy active child care settings and community practices throughout the state.

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Contact(s) for this Announcement
  • Vicky Boyce Email    (503) 947-5910
    Child Nutrition Program - Nutrition Specialist
  • Lynne Reinoso Email    (503) 947-5892
    Child Nutrition Program - Program Mgr, Community Nutrition Programs
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