WOONSOCKET – Thundermist Health Center recently received a $75,000 grant from Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island (BCBSRI) to fund a new initiative, Impacting Obesity Together: Woonsocket, which focuses on increasing healthy diets and physical activity among low-income Woonsocket families.
Thundermist will lead the initiative in collaboration with the Greater Providence YMCA, Farm Fresh Rhode Island and Connecting for Children and Families.
The program aims to reduce obesity among Woonsocket’s children through an integrated approach and ensure that Woonsocket’s children and families have access to evidenced based, culturally and linguistically competent, sustainable programming and year-round access to healthy foods. The initiative is expected to serve 1,150 children and 450 parents and caregivers in Woonsocket.
The initiative will receive this funding as part of the 2014 BlueAngel Community Health Grant Program (BACHG), which supports nonprofit organizations addressing critical health issues in Rhode Island. The Impacting Obesity Together pilot program will marry Thundermist’s “ThunderKids” program with the YMCA’s “Join for Me” program and Farm Fresh RI’s “Healthy Foods, Healthy Families” and farmers market programs.
“Good nutrition, physical activity and healthy weight are the foundations of healthy lives for children and their families, and keeping our communities healthy is everyone’s responsibility,” said Chuck Jones, president and CEO, Thundermist. “Working together, we can make a far greater impact than each organization could make individually, and this grant makes that collaboration possible.”
As BCBSRI celebrates 75 years of providing health care coverage this year, it is awarding three $75,000 BlueAngel Community Health grants to agency collaborations that provide community education and outreach on the importance of good nutrition, physical activity, and healthy weight for children and their families. For the first time this year, grants are focused exclusively on programs impacting childhood obesity.