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America On the Move (AOM) in Pittsburgh Seeking ‘Schools On the Move’

October 7, 2008

PITTSBURGH, Oct. 7 /PRNewswire/ — America On the Move (AOM) in Pittsburgh is looking for Western Pennsylvania area schools that have implemented or wish to implement health-related initiatives to help students stay active and understand the importance of exercise and nutrition. Many schools have taken small steps such as removing vending machines and modifying school lunch programs to make a difference. Others have implemented creative programs such as redesigning physical education classes and afterschool activities and programs.

“AOM’s commitment to the efforts that schools are playing in the health of our youth is reflected in the development of the Schools On the Move program,” says John Jakicic, PhD, Director, AOM in Pittsburgh. In 2007-2008 AOM recognized the achievements of six schools in our region, including West Mifflin Middle School, Burchfield Elementary School in the Shaler School District, South Fayette Elementary and Middle School, Avonworth Middle School, Seton LaSalle High School, and North Allegheny Senior High School. Based on the success of this program, the AOM in Pittsburgh coalition of partners is expanding this program in 2008-2009 with the Recognition and Grant Program. Local partners include UPMC Health Plan, University of Pittsburgh, KDKA-TV, H.J. Heinz Company, and Del Monte Foods.

The Schools On the Move Recognition Program recognizes area schools that have implemented innovative health-related initiatives to help students stay active and understand the importance of exercise and nutrition. The school will receive the recognition award at an assembly hosted by KDKA-TV personality Sonni Abatta and will be featured in a segment on KDKA-TV.

A new initiative, the Schools On the Move Grant Program, will award a minimum of five schools in the region with up to $5,000 to support efforts focused on improving the health of the youth of that school. AOM understands that most schools have limited resources available for activities and programs outside the normal curriculum. Therefore, the grant program can help fund innovative ideas that the schools wish to implement. The grants will be presented at a school assembly hosted by KDKA-TV personality Sonni Abatta and will be featured in a segment on KDKA-TV.

The message of AOM is simple: Move more; eat less. The health benefits will be long lasting, and by setting reasonable goals and choosing a physical activity that you love, you can take steps to better health.

About America On the Move

America On the Move in Pittsburgh is a local affiliate of the America On the Move(R) Foundation Inc., which is a national nonprofit organization that helps individuals, families, and communities make positive changes to improve Americans’ health and quality of life. With more than a million participants online and offline, America On the Move supports a small-changes approach to healthy eating and active living habits. America On the Move’s science-based programs and outreach support Americans of all ages in managing their weight effectively through energy balance. For more information, please visit http://www.americaonthemove.org/.

UPMC Health Plan

CONTACT: Gina Pferdehirt, Director, Public Relations & CommunityRelations, UPMC Health Plan, +1-412-454-4953, HealthPlanMedia@upmc.edu, orJohn Jakicic, Director, America On the Move in Pittsburgh, +1-412-488-4182,jjakicic@pitt.edu

Web site: http://www.upmchealthplan.com/




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