Anthem Grant Promotes Wellness for Disadvantaged Maine Children

Mar 23, 2011, 13:01 ET from Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation LLC

S. PORTLAND, Maine, March 23, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A recent survey by the Susan Curtis Leadership Center shows that many disadvantaged children who attended Camp Susan Curtis last year are now practicing healthy behaviors from the 5-2-1-0 plan, thanks to a grant from the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation. The grant sponsored nutrition education and wellness activities last year at Camp Susan Curtis for 500 Maine children in need.  

A growing body of research shows the relationship between socioeconomic status, obesity and self-esteem.(1) Nationally, children in poor families are twice as likely to be overweight or obese compared with children in affluent families.(2) "Enhancing physical wellness contributes to the development of self-esteem and is essential to advancing our core mission," said Terri Mulks, Camp Director. "We are very grateful to Anthem for helping us promote healthy lifestyle options at Camp Susan Curtis." The Susan Curtis Lifestyles Education Program is based on the Let's GO(3) 5-2-1-0 mnemonic:  5 fruits and vegetables a day, 2 hours or less of recreational screen time, 1 hour of physical activity a day, and 0/fewer sugary drinks a day. The Anthem grant funded a new sports court, nutrition education classes, 5-2-1-'0'lympics events and take-home bags with healthy recipes and 5-2-1-0 materials for families.  

"Programs like this are a wonderful fit for our mission," said Jeffrey Holmstrom, D.O., medical director, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine. "The good health habits we instill in children early on will have a major impact on them growing into healthy adults."

About the Susan Curtis Leadership Center

The mission of the Susan Curtis Leadership Center is to build the individual character, self-confidence and self-esteem of economically disadvantaged Maine children through the provision of tuition-free, high-quality camping, educational and social experiences. Maine children in need from ages 8 to 16 attend Camp Susan Curtis; of those who return each summer for four years and then complete leadership training, 96% graduate high school and nearly 80% go on to college. For more on the Susan Curtis Leadership Center please visit www.susancurtisfoundation.org.

About the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation

Through charitable grant making, the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation LLC, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, promotes Anthem's inherent commitment to enhance the health and well-being of individuals and families in communities that Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield serves. The Foundation focuses its funding on strategic initiatives that address and provide innovative solutions to reduce the number of uninsured as well as organizations and nonprofit charities that promote the Healthy Generations Program, a multi-generational initiative that targets specific disease states and medical conditions. These include: prenatal care in the first trimester, low birth weight babies, cardiac morbidity rates, long term activities that decrease obesity and increase physical activity, diabetes prevalence in adult populations, adult pneumococcal and influenza vaccinations and smoking cessation. The Foundation also coordinates the company's annual associate giving campaign and its parent foundation provides a 50 percent match of associates' campaign pledges. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. To learn more about the Foundation please visit www.wellpointfoundation.org.

About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine is the trade name of Anthem Health Plans of Maine, Inc., an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Additional information about Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Maine is available at www.anthem.com. Also, follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/healthjoinin, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HealthJoinIn, or visit our YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/healthjoinin.  

(1)  U.S. Department of Health & Human Services; ASPE.hhs.Gov

(2)  Data Resource Center for Child & Adolescent Health (www.childhealthdate.org).

(3)  Let's Go! is a community-wide physical activity and nutrition initiative in Greater Portland, Maine.



SOURCE Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation LLC



RELATED LINKS

http://www.wellpointfoundation.org


http://www.susancurtisfoundation.org