UnitedHealthcare volunteers expand and renovate school gardens at three Guilford County elementary schools
GREENSBORO, N.C., Oct. 10 /CSRwire/ - UnitedHealthcare, FoodCorps and NC Cooperative Extension/Guilford County Center celebrated National Farm to School Month today with a kickoff event today at the NC Agricultural & Technical State University Farm. The celebration marked UnitedHealthcare’s support of two FoodCorps service members serving in nine Title One Schools in High Point. The funding was made possible through CBS EcoMedia’s WellnessAd program.
Service members will implement FoodCorps’ three-pillared approach to ensuring all kids have access to nutritious food and grow up healthfully. The FoodCorps program will have an impact on nearly 3,600 students throughout the district and will include new school gardens; produce donated to food-insecure families and students; behavior change toward trying new fruits and vegetables; and an overall assessment of the progress each school makes toward developing a healthy school food environment.
Chef Vivian Howard, from Kinston’s Chef & The Farmer Eatery and PBS documentary series “A Chef’s Life” was at A&T State Farm participating in “Farm to School Days” and provided a kid-friendly vegetable recipe.
This morning’s kickoff event was hosted by Garland Scott, CEO, UnitedHealthcare of the Carolinas; Leah Klaproth, FoodCorps fellow in North Carolina; Angelo Kidd, Regional Superintendent for the Western Region, Guilford County School District; Marty Lawing, County Manager, Guilford County; Ed Price, Board Member, Guilford County School District; Carlvena Foster, Board Member, Guilford County School District; Karen Neill, NC Cooperative Extension/Guilford County; William B. Wickliffe, Guilford County Cooperative Extension Director; and Paul Polizzotto, President and Founder of CBS EcoMedia, Inc.Other VIPs on hand for the festivities included Michele Matyasovsky, FoodCorps’ Director of Corporate and Foundation Giving.
Following the kickoff, UnitedHealthcare employee volunteers worked at Parkview Elementary School, Northwood Elementary School and Union Hill Elementary School planting fruit trees and building: tables and benches, grape arbors, composting stations, hand-washing stations and tool sheds.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to work with FoodCorps and make a sustainable impact on the lives of children in Greensboro,” said Garland Scott, CEO, UnitedHealthcare of the Carolinas. “We believe this program will play a significant role in building a healthier community and teach children how to live healthier lives.”
The FoodCorps project is the latest in UnitedHealthcare’s “Do Good. Live Well.” employee-volunteer initiative, whose mission is to prevent hunger and obesity, inspire service and encourage volunteerism. Through partnerships, financial support and the helping hands of employee volunteers, UnitedHealthcare is working to help build healthier communities.
“We are grateful to CBS EcoMedia, Inc. and UnitedHealthcare for supporting our program in Guilford County,” said Debra Eschmeyer, FoodCorps Co-Founder and Vice President of External Affairs. “They are making it possible for us to provide nutrition education in the classrooms, build and enhance school gardens, and add healthy items to the menus in school cafeterias so all kids have an opportunity to grow up in a vibrant, healthy school food environment. We’re excited to see this relationship bear fruit for many years to come.”
Guilford County, North Carolina is ranked second in the nation for food insecurity. Greensboro-High Point, the site of the two new FoodCorps service members being supported by UnitedHealthcare, is tied with New Orleans-Metairie-Kenner with a rank of second highest rate of food insecurity among all cities with 23 percent of residents experiencing food insecurity, behind only Bakersville, California.
“Every child should have access to healthy food,” said Paul Polizzotto, President and Founder of CBS EcoMedia Inc. “At EcoMedia, we’ve made it our mission to address food insecurity issues and to surround students across the country in wellness. Thanks to the generous financial support provided by UnitedHealthcare through our WellnessAd program, and their commitment to building healthier communities, nearly 3,600 students in North Carolina will be exposed to a healthier food environment.”
UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. The company offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 650,000 physicians and care professionals and 5,000 hospitals nationwide. UnitedHealthcare serves more than 38 million people and is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company.
FoodCorps is a nationwide team of leaders that connects kids to real food and helps them grow up healthy. Embedded with local partners in limited-resource communities, our AmeriCorps service members teach kids what healthy food is and where it comes from, build and tend school gardens, and facilitate getting high-quality local food into public school cafeterias.
We do that by placing motivated leaders in limited-resource communities for a year of public service. Working under the direction of local partner organizations, we implement a three-ingredient recipe for healthy kids. Our Service Members:
About North Carolina Cooperative Extension/Guilford County Cente
North Carolina Cooperative Extension partners with communities to deliver education and technology that enrich the lives, land and economy of North Carolinians.
We are county agents, professors, scientists, and volunteers working together to improve the quality of life in Guilford County and North Carolina. The North Carolina Cooperative Extension provides educational programming in five key areas:
Over 125 lay leaders comprise the Extension Advisory Leadership System in Guilford County. These volunteers keep Extension professionals aware of local issues and needs so we can design our educational outreach accordingly
We receive financial support from three levels of government — federal, state and county — and from private financial sources. The Extension Service also works with other agencies and receives support from agri-business, industry, foundations and individuals.
About CBS EcoMedia Inc.
At EcoMedia, we’re propelled by the desire to create positive social change; that’s been our mission since we founded the company in 2002. In 2010, after successfully partnering with CBS on a wide range of environmental projects, EcoMedia became the newest addition to the CBS Corporation portfolio, exponentially scaling our reach across television, radio, interactive, publishing and outdoor media.
Through our patent-pending EcoAd, WellnessAd and EducationAd programs, an innovative twist on traditional advertising, advertisers are able to support much-needed local projects which in turn creates jobs, saves taxpayer money and improves the quality of life in communities nationwide. In the process, we’re fundamentally altering the advertising landscape, elevating the ordinary, traditional commercial – and media, in general – into a catalyst for tangible, quantifiable social change. Please visit ecomediacbs.com, like us at facebook.com/EcoMediaCBS or follow us at Twitter.com/EcoMediaCBS.
By participating in EcoMedia’s EcoAd, WellnessAd and EducationAd advertising programs, EcoMedia’s advertisers agree to provide funding for projects we believe will have a beneficial effect upon the environment, health and/or education within local communities. EcoMedia’s advertising programs are not certification programs nor are the EcoAd, WellnessAd or EducationAd logos seals of approval. EcoMedia does not in any way certify, endorse or make any representations about EcoMedia program advertisers, their products or services.
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