RICHMOND, Va., Nov. 12, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) today announced 10 new grants to local Boys & Girls Clubs in Virginia to improve the health and wellbeing of kids in the state thanks to Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation. Boys & Girls Clubs provide Virginia's kids and teens with critical programming during after-school time that creates a positive environment and supports a healthy, active lifestyle. Boys & Girls Clubs around the state will receive grants to support Triple Play programming that focuses on being healthy through the mind, body and soul.
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation will issue the following grants to clubs:
- Boys & Girls Club of Southwest Virginia, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Blue Ridge, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Virginia Peninsula and Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeast Virginia will each receive a $5,000 focus grant to provide programming focused on teaching the importance of healthy eating habits and being physically active. Each club will also focus on increasing fruit and veggie consumption or physical activity as part of the grant.
- The Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond Southside Unit will also receive a $16,500 impact grant for a games room renovation. The renovation will provide much needed equipment for the indoor room that facilitates social interactions between kids and provides productive physical and mental games and activities for club members.
"Kids and teens today face a variety of challenges when it comes to eating healthy and staying physically fit. That's why we support Triple Play, to help ensure that our youth build life-long healthy habits with a firm foundation of support," said Patrick B. Sturdivant, president of Anthem's Medicaid plan, Anthem HealthKeepers Plus. "The Triple Play program and Boys & Girls Clubs in Virginia are working to build great futures for our kids by changing the opportunity equation to help them make healthy choices, and participate in healthy activities each and every day."
As Boys & Girls Clubs of America's proven health and wellness program, Triple Play is a game plan for the mind, body and soul. Supported by founding sponsor The Coca-Cola Company and co-sponsor, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation, the program's three components encourage Club members to eat healthier (mind), become more physically active (body) and increase their ability to engage in healthy relationships (soul). Since the program's inception in 2005, Triple Play has made over 10 million connections with kids and teens.
"Even after a decade, Triple Play continues to be one of the most utilized programs at Boys & Girls Clubs around the country and it is critical that we continue to elevate this program to help Club members choose a healthy pathway into adulthood," said Jennifer Bateman, national vice president for programs, training and youth development with BGCA. "We are incredibly grateful for the support and partnership of Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation, because without their support we would not be able to impact so many kids and teens each year. As we exceed our 10 millionth connection with the program, we hope to continue to provide new and much needed healthy lifestyles programming to kids who need it most, and create a positive foundation for them to grow and thrive."
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation is committed to improving health and strengthening Virginia communities. Through its Healthy Generations grant program, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation works to identify the issues most in need of attention and then directs its financial support and volunteer efforts toward improving health in those areas. Promoting youth health and active lifestyles is an ongoing focus of the foundation.
The Triple Play grants announced today are part of a five-year, $10 million commitment from Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation's parent company foundation to Boys & Girls Clubs of America to promote healthy lifestyles. Last year, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation provided nine Triple Play grants to clubs around Virginia. This is the fifth consecutive year Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation has awarded Triple Play grants in Virginia.
About Triple Play
Triple Play: A healthy lifestyles Game Plan for the Mind, Body and Soul, was launched in 2005 by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services and with support from The Coca-Cola Company. The goal of Triple Play is to encourage kids to eat healthier, become more physically active and increase their ability to engage in healthy relationships. A two-year study of more than 2,000 children ages 9-14 showed that Triple Play succeeded in getting them to exercise more, eat healthier foods and feel better about themselves. The study found that Triple Play kids increased to 90 percent of the federally recommended amount of daily exercise, which is 60 minutes a day for children, while their peers outside the program decreased to 78 percent. Triple Play includes five program components, each of which serves between 20,000 and 500,000 youth annually. Since its inception in 2005, Triple Play has made more than 10 million connections with kids across the country. In 2011, the Anthem Foundation joined BGCA and Coca-Cola as a Triple Play sponsor. Learn more about the program at www.bgca.org/tripleplay.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (GreatFutures.org) has enabled young people most in need to achieve great futures as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Today, more than 4,100 Clubs serve nearly 4 million young people annually through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs are located in cities, towns, public housing and on Native lands throughout the country, and serve military families in BGCA-affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations worldwide. They provide a safe place, caring adult mentors, fun, friendship, and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours. Priority programs emphasize academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles. In a Harris Survey of alumni, 54 percent said the Club saved their lives. National headquarters are located in Atlanta. Learn more at http://www.bgca.org/facebook and http://bgca.org/twitter.
About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation
Through charitable grant making, the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation LLC, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Association promotes Anthem Blue Cross's inherent commitment to enhance the health and well-being of individuals and families in communities that the company serves. The Foundation focuses it's funding on strategic initiatives that address and provide innovative solutions to health care challenges, as well as promoting 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 Associate Giving program which provides a 50 percent match of associates' campaign pledges, as well as it's Volunteer Time Off and Dollars for Doers community service programs. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross names and symbol are registered marks of the Blue Cross Association.
SOURCE Boys & Girls Clubs of America