Eureka High School Students Work to Get Better Water Access



CA4Health works in rural and small California counties to reduce chronic disease and illness by helping bring about changes in the community that make it easier for people to make healthier choices in their daily lives. Many of these communities have a high Latino population. In Humboldt County, the local health department partnered with students and staff at Eureka High School to implement Hydration Nation, an effort that increased the access and appeal of fresh drinking water as a healthy alternative to the sugary beverages that are helping fuel the nation’s obesity epidemic. At Eureka High School, there were 11 older-style water fountains available to the 1,200 students and 80 staff members, none of which allowed easy filling of the reusable water bottles which were gaining ...

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Hydration Stations Start a Water-Drinking Movement in Washington



Latinos are the fastest-growing minority group in Washington State. Because Latino kids tend to drink more sugary drinks than their White peers, healthy beverage policies have the potential to impact Latino kids’ health in big ways. In Washington, community partners are teaming-up with schools and lawmakers to come up with ways to encourage kids to quench their thirst with water, not sugar. EMERGENCE Awareness/Learn: Childhood obesity is a problem in the state of Washington, which is 11% Latino. In 2012, 25% of Washington children ages 2-4 who received benefits from the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC; Latinos comprise about 41% of WIC participants) were overweight or obese, according to the state’s Department of Health. About 23% ...

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Schools in Hall County GA Get Healthier Snacks



Alliance for a Healthier Generation’s Healthy Schools Program participants in Hall County, Ga. are working toward providing healthy snacks in all schools. “The way the Alliance does it is right on,” explained Weirs. “We didn’t have any health efforts in place at the time, and we needed to know what a healthy school should look like. The Alliance gave us the road map, the tools and the recognition. They helped us identify where we were currently, where we were we going and what incentives we needed to get there. The Alliance made it so easy.” The biggest task Weirs, as the district's Wellness Coordinator, took on was getting sugar-sweetened sports drinks out of elementary schools. Many schools are hesitant to make this change because of their fears that sales will ...

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Study: Availability of Drinking Water in U.S. Public School Cafeterias



Starting in the 2011-12 school year, schools participating in the federally-funded National School Lunch Program were required to provide students with access to free drinking water during school meals, in the location where meals are served. New research by Bridging the Gap describes how schools are meeting this requirement and provides insight about the cleanliness of drinking fountains. The report found that most participating schools met the water requirements, but that there is still work to be done to improve water quality and access. Check out the full research ...

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Pediatrician Challenges Families to Rethink Sugary Juices and Drinks



Growing up in Spain, Dr. Marta Katalenas ate home-cooked meals made with fresh ingredients.When she moved to the United States in 1984 to learn English and become a pediatrician, she saw a different way of life that included way more treats, especially sugary juices and drinks. As she began her practice, she said she saw a growing association between kids drinking too much sugar and being overweight. Dr. Katalenas decided that if she was going to help parents set their kids on a path of health, she needed to get the whole community involved in reducing sugary drink consumption—so she made reducing sugary drinks part of her new monthly health challenge for families. EMERGENCE Awareness: Spain native Dr. Marta Katalenas, who moved to the U.S. in 1984 and became a board-certified ...

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Water Works: A Guide to Improving Water Access and Consumption in Schools to Improve Health and Support Learning



Want to get better water access at your school but don't know where to start? The Water Works Implementation Guide can help you develop a comprehensive program to increase access to safe, appealing, low-cost drinking water sources in your school. It also provides ideas, materials, and resources to help you increase water consumption among the school community. Finally, the guide provides resources to help you evaluate the impact of your water program. The guide can be found at waterinschools.org, which also houses fact sheets and case studies about schools that have brought water back on to campus. Development of this guide was supported by a grant from the San Francisco Foundation and from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through its Healthy Eating Research program. Check ...

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School Food Official Helps Bring Water to Every Desk!



Cutler-Orosi is the largest unincorporated community in one of the poorest counties in California. Located in the largely Latino region called the San Joaquin Valley, more than half of the men and women who live here are migrant farm workers. Poverty limits food and beverage choices to what’s cheap, easy, and not always healthy. One school district food services director, Brenda Handy, went above and beyond to ensure that, while kids were at school, they were not only eating well, but drinking well, too. Tackling the 'Soda Issue' Ever since Brenda Handy started as food services director for the 95% Latino Cutler-Orosi Joint Unified School District in California’s San Joaquin Valley more than four years ago, she saw students struggle to maintain healthy weights. She noticed ...

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Howard County Group Launches New Better Beverage Campaign



  Supported by the Horizon Foundation, Howard County Unsweetened has tools, resources, news, and more on how parents and their kids can swap sugary drinks for healthier alternatives. Their latest video campaign suggests that big soda companies should focus on promoting healthier beverages, like water, and not high-sugar drinks. The campaign challenges folks to rethink what marketing beverages to children should look like. Check out their latest video here! Howard County Unsweetened hosted a contest inviting high-schoolers to submit short documentaries about the problem of sugary drink consumption, and creative new ways to deal with it. They announced the winner in February 2014---watch the ...

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‘Sugar Bites’ Campaign Educates on Sugary Drinks & Childhood Obesity



Sugary drinks are a large component of added calories in the American diet. Latino kids have increased their consumption of sugary drinks—such as soft drinks, sports drinks, fruit-flavored drinks, and flavored milk—between 1991 and 2008, research shows. In Contra Costa, Calif., where 24% of the population is Latino, one of every three kids from low-income families are overweight or obese. A county organization worked with an advertising agency to develop a bilingual social marketing campaign, called Sugar Bites, to urge parents to choose water for their kids instead of sugary drinks. EMERGENCE Awareness: First 5 California is a state organization funded by Proposition 10, a statewide ballot initiative passed in 1998, to conduct health and education programs to benefit children ages ...

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