HCF Dedicates $2.7 Million to Programs and Initiatives That Strive to Improve Access to Healthy Eating and Active Living

June 8, 2011
Jennifer Sykes

KANSAS CITY, MO – The Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City (HCF) has awarded 25 Healthy Lifestyles grants totaling over $2.7 million. These grants support community partnerships that aim to increase opportunities for physical activity and improve access to affordable, healthy foods for children and families.

“Our vision is Healthy People in Healthy Communities. In order to achieve that vision, people need healthy environments that are structured in ways that help them access healthy foods and easily incorporate physical activity into their daily routine. HCF is proud to support these agencies and partnerships in their efforts to create healthy environments in the metropolitan area,” said Steve Roling, HCF President/CEO.

In December 2010, HCF released its Healthy Lifestyles Requests for Proposals. The Foundation received a total of 67 proposals totaling nearly $10 million in requests. The following grants were awarded during the June Board of Directors meeting:

Agency Amount Awarded Project Description
Black Health Care Coalition $45,492 To support the implementation of a project to address infant mortality, diabetes and hypertension and their connection to obesity through policy efforts, social media, and projects through faith based organizations.
City of Kansas City, Missouri $180,000 To support Active Living KC, which provides multiple strategies that address childhood obesity in the Hickman Mills School District, including walking school bus, bicycle routes, nutrition planning and wellness.
Communities Creating Opportunity $60,468 To work with leaders in the Linwood neighborhood and the Northeast Kansas City, Missouri to address the lack of access to full service stores that provide fresh food, to improve the safety of students in and around the KCMO school district and improve the safety of at risk populations in the Northeast to enable recreation and physical activity in public parks. 
Cross-Lines Cooperative Council $8,000 To support a garden project that makes fresh food available in the Armourdale community of Kansas City, KS.
DeLaSalle Education Center $100,000 To support a project that helps students adopt healthier eating habits and increase physical activity by using an across-the-curriculum approach.
El Centro, Inc. $100,000 For the Promotores de Salud program, which will train outreach workers who will work in the Latino community to refer those in need to a weight loss program.
Elm Creek Community Garden $10,000 To expand the rural community garden in Iola, KS from 36 to 122 plots.
Gordon Parks Elementary School $48,016 For the Eat, Exercise, Excel program, which will work toward improving access to and consumption of healthy foods through lunch service, improve and add additional physical exercises and provide multi-vitamins.
Greater Kansas City Local Initiatives Support Cooperation (LISC) $81,571 To expand the Neighborhood NOW Healthy Advocacy Initiative, which works toward building broad based  support for policies that create more healthy, urban neighborhoods.
Guadalupe Center, Inc. $186,246 To support the West Side Nutrition Project which will improve nutrition and increase consumption of locally-grown foods by fostering systemic change.
Harvesters – The Community Food Network $200,000 To support its Project Strength, Kids in the Kitchen/Kids Café, Teen Eats and Harvesters Health Ambassador programs.
Ivanhoe Neighborhood Council $75,000 To  implement the “Grown in Ivanhoe” project which seeks to advance healthy eating through sustainable environmental change.
Kansas City Center for Urban Agriculture $210,000 To support the Get Growing Kansas City, an innovative outreach pilot program that will build capacity for multiple organizations working to increase access to healthy food.
Kansas City Urban Youth Center $120,000 For Race for Health, a comprehensive obesity prevention program that provides nutrition education, physical activity opportunities and gardening experience to low-income youth.
Mattie Rhodes Center $100,000 For the Gente Sana (Healthy People) program to implement a fully-coordinated culturally competent new healthy food system with multiple partnerships to benefit Hispanic families in Northeast Kansas City.
Menorah Legacy Foundation $147,000 To expand the Beans and Greens program to make fresh, locally grown food accessible and affordable for low-income persons by providing a dollar-to-dollar match for food assistance at area farmer’s markets.
Mother’s Refuge $28,835 To provide nutritional food for homeless, pregnant teenagers such as fresh fruit, vegetables and lean meat.
restart, Inc. $89,921 To develop healthy living habits for up to 800 homeless children and youth and families by providing physical activity programs, nutritional education, and access to healthy food.
Rosedale Development Association, Inc. $60,830 To work within the Rosedale community to increase access to healthy foods, expand opportunities for youth activities, and increase safety and convenience of community routes.
StandUp Blue Springs, Inc. $84,554 To support the Let’s Move Blue Springs initiative. 
The Children’s Mercy Hospital $208,026 To support Weighing In, a system-level approach to prevent childhood obesity with a focus on lowering risks in three population groups – prenatal, early childhood and school age.
The Society of St Andrew, Inc. $150,000 To help coordinate the acquisition, shipment and delivery of large volume loads of donated produce to food banks.
Unified Government of Wyandotte, Public Health Department $190,000 To assess existing policies and environmental conditions, engage stakeholders, identify resources and develop a strategic plan to prevent and reduce obesity in Wyandotte County.
Unified School District 257 $100,000 To support SAFEBASE’s Fun and Fit/Farm to Fork Healthy Sprouts program, which engages 200 K-5th grade students through hands-on gardening, nutrition and physical fitness activities.
University of Kansas Medical Center Research Institute, Inc. $126,000 To support Healthy Hawks, a multilingual family based behavioral treatment program for pediatric obesity.

The Healthy Lifestyles grants are the first Foundation Defined Grants (FDGs) awarded by the Foundation in 2011. Mental health grants will be announced in August 2011. HCF will announce our final RFP of 2011, Safety Net, in mid-June.