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The Dannon Company Awards Joint Township District Memorial Hospital the Sixth Annual Dannon Next Generation Nutrition(R) Grant

$30,000 Grant Will Fund the Grand Health Family Challenge Program to Curb Childhood and Family Obesity

Submitted by: Dannon Company, The

Categories: Health & Wellness, Philanthropy & Corporate Contributions

Posted: Aug 02, 2011 – 08:38 AM EST


WAPAKONETA, Ohio, Aug. 02 /CSRwire/ - /PRNewswire/ - The Dannon Company, Inc. today awarded the sixth annual Dannon Next Generation Nutrition® Grant to Joint Township District Memorial Hospital in support of its Grand Health Family Challenge nutrition education and family weight loss program. Dannon presented Joint Township with a $30,000 check during an evening event at the Auglaize County Fair.

Modeled in part after NBC's The Biggest Loser, the Grand Health Family Challenge will bring together 50 area families to participate in a comprehensive health and nutrition program that includes several months of sponsored fitness activities, including a canal hike, bike ride, and 5K walk/run; family nutrition and physical activity educational sessions; private BMI screenings and other services; and prizes and other incentives to be awarded for both participation and weight loss.

"Joint Township District Memorial Hospital is honored to be the recipient of the sixth annual Dannon Next Generation Nutrition® Grant," said Kevin Harlan, president and CEO of Grand Lake Health System, of which Joint Township is a member. "It is exciting to have such a committed corporate partner as Dannon in West Central Ohio to help address the health and nutrition of the families we serve. We look forward to what we can all accomplish working together."

"Minster is home to the nation's largest yogurt manufacturing plant and Dannon continues to play an indelible role in our area through the jobs that they provide," said Ohio State Senator Keith Faber. "I hope that the product they produce and the advocacy they provide continue to positively impact our community for years to come."

"As a former athlete, coach, and educator, I know just how important it is to try to lead a healthy and active life," said Ohio State Senator Cliff Hite. "Without question, it's great to see all of the resources Dannon has provided to those interested in becoming more health-conscious."

"It is imperative that we take steps to curb obesity and to promote fitness, good nutrition, and healthy lifestyles in Ohio and across the country," said Ohio State Representatives Robert Sprague and John Adams in a joint statement. "Both Dannon and Joint Township have our sincere thanks for bringing such incredible energy and support to this cause."

In response to an alarming epidemic of obesity among children and adolescents, The Dannon Company established the Dannon Next Generation Nutrition® Grant program in 2006 to promote childhood nutrition education programs in each of the four communities where a Dannon facility is located. As part of the program, Dannon contributes $30,000 to four non-profit organizations ($120,000 in total) in Auglaize, Mercer, Darke, or Shelby County, Ohio; Salt Lake County, Utah; Tarrant County, Texas; and Westchester County, New York, for programs that nurture healthy eating habits among children.

"Dannon has a role in society beyond the production of nutritious, great-tasting foods, and we're always proud to work closely with organizations in Auglaize County and elsewhere to promote lifelong healthy habits," said Gayle Binney, Dannon's corporate responsibility manager. "Joint Township and the Grand Health Family Challenge program match Dannon's values perfectly."

Today's grant ceremony, held at the grandstand of the Auglaize County Fair in Wapakoneta, Ohio, was attended by Ohio State Senators Keith Faber and Cliff Hite; Ohio State Representatives John Adams and Robert Sprague; Auglaize County Commissioners John Bergman, Don Regula, and Doug Spencer; and Minster Village Administrator Donald W. Harrod; Joint Township District Memorial Hospital's President and CEO Kevin Harlan, and Community Outreach Coordinator Anne Larger; Dannon Corporate Responsibility Manager Gayle Binney; and Dannon's Minster, Ohio Senior Plant Director Doug Roy.

About Joint Township District Memorial Hospital
The anchor facility of Grand Lake Health System, Joint Township District Memorial Hospital is a full-service comprehensive care facility located in St. Mary's, Ohio. A charitable non-profit community hospital, Joint Township District Memorial Hospital has been a cornerstone of health care in St. Mary's Auglaize County, and portions of a four-county agricultural area, for more than fifty-seven years. In 2007 and 2009 the hospital was recognized and rated as being in the top 1% of all hospitals in the nation for quality excellence and efficiency, and the Home Health and ER services were ranked among the best in the U.S. With the new expansion of state-of-the-art facilities, development of programs utilizing advanced technologies, and comprehensive services designed to meet evolving medical needs, Joint Township continues to commit to the health and well-being of the Grand Lake Region.

About The Grand Health Family Challenge
The Grand Health Family Challenge is a weight loss program developed by Joint Township District Memorial Hospital and community partners to reduce childhood and family obesity in Auglaize County and portions of rural Mercer, Shelby, and Allen Counties. The program is a new extension of the hospital's Grand Health Challenge and was a recipient of the David Hendershot Rural Health Promotion Award from the Ohio Hospital Association and the American Heart Association's Gold and Platinum Level Start! Fit-Friendly Awards. Since its creation in 2006, the Grand Health Challenge has helped 1,892 community members lose more than 20,000 pounds.

About The Dannon Company, Inc.
The Dannon Company is America's founding national yogurt company and continually leverages its expertise to develop and market innovative cultured fresh dairy products in the United States. Headquartered in White Plains, NY, Dannon has plants in Minster, OH, Fort Worth, TX, and West Jordan, UT, and produces approximately 100 different types of flavors, styles and sizes of cultured fresh dairy products. Dannon is a subsidiary of Danone, one of the world's leading producers of packaged foods and beverages, and Dannon is the top-selling brand of yogurt products worldwide, sold under the names Dannon and Danone.

With a strong commitment to high-quality, wholesome, nutritious, and innovative products, The Dannon Company is committed to encouraging people to eat a balanced diet and live a healthy lifestyle. In 2010, for the tenth year in a row, Danone was listed on the Dow Jones Sustainability Index, a worldwide reference for socially responsible businesses. Danone is a recognized leader for its contributions to nutrition and health and was ranked best in class in a 2008 JPMorgan & Insight Investment study about the response of the world's largest food companies to obesity and health-related concerns. This commitment is also illustrated through The Dannon Company's support of the Dannon Institute, an independent, non-profit foundation dedicated to promoting research, education, and communication about the links between nutrition, diet and health. For more information, please visit www.dannon.com.

For more information, please contact:

Ashley Dennis Edelman
Phone: Cell: (646) 764-9362
Michael Dirda Edelman
Phone: Tel: (212) 277-4320
Phone 2: Cell: (646) 323-0855

For more from this organization:

Dannon Company, The


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