School Year Ends on Profitable Note for Reynolds' Kids

Students Walk More Than 25 Million Steps to Earn Funds for Health-Related

School Programs

Jun 19, 2006, 01:00 ET from Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon

    FAIRVIEW, Ore., June 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Three schools in the Reynolds
 School District participated in "Move It!," a walking challenge sponsored
 by Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon. Fourth and fifth-graders teamed
 up to walk for their health and earn prize money to benefit their schools'
 health and fitness programs. Physical education specialists integrated the
 program into their curriculum and distributed a "Move It!" backpack, water
 bottle and pedometer to their participating students at Fairview, Salish
 Ponds and Woodland Elementary.
     On Thursday, June 22, Regence will recognize the accomplishments of the
 65 fifth-graders at Salish Ponds Elementary who took more than 25 million
 steps during the walking challenge. A check for $2,500 will be presented to
 these students at an all-school assembly. "Our goal was to help students
 develop healthy habits and an active lifestyle," said Bart McMullan,
 president of Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon. "Walking is a positive
 health benefit to all kids, and we hope this program helped them to
 establish walking as a healthy habit."
     The "Move It!" program was designed to motivate students to be active
 every day by mixing health awareness, action and competition into the daily
 lives of the children. To participate, students were asked to wear a
 pedometer and record the number of steps they took daily. "Wearing their
 own pedometers, I asked 20 teachers to join in the challenge so that the
 children could see how their teachers compared to each other, and to the
 students," said Karen Roney, physical education specialist at Salish Ponds.
 "When the program ended, my students did not want to stop -- so I put up
 new posters and they are still going."
     Elements of the program included personal and team challenges, as well
 as role models -- historical explorers from the American Westward
     Fairview Elementary came in second and was presented a check for $1,000
 on June 14, 2006. Linda Ferris, the physical education specialist at
 Fairview Elementary, worked with her students to record close to seven
 million steps. "My students loved choosing their own goals and computing
 our steps into miles," said Ferris, "thanks to Regence for doing this for
 our kids health."
     "We are dedicated to ensuring that children have a healthy start, which
 is the foundation of a healthy life," McMullan said. "We are looking
 forward to this program again next year."
     About Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon
     Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon provides medical, dental and
 related coverage for about one million members in Oregon and in Clark
 County, Washington. It's part of the Regence Group, the largest affiliation
 of health plans in the northwest and intermountain states, collectively
 covering nearly three million people. The Regence Group and its affiliates
 are not-for-profit independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield
 Association. Nearly one in three Americans has health care coverage through
 Blue Plans. For more information, visit

SOURCE Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon