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Media Alert
Foundation of Yuma Regional Medical Center fights obesity with YOUTH Initiative
Contact: Kaitlan Schick
Corporate Communication Specialist
(928) 336-7545

Foundation to offer grants to local schools and community organizations to combat obesity

(April 18, 2013 – Yuma, Arizona) - The Foundation of Yuma Regional Medical Center is offering grants to local schools and non-profit organizations that can provide innovative programs to reduce obesity and promote healthy lifestyle changes. Through the YOUTH (Yumans' Obesity Undermines Their Health) Initiative, the Foundation has provided over $150,000 in grants that address the obesity epidemic in Yuma County since 2008. This year, the Foundation will provide grants ranging from $500 to $5,000.

Grants are available to local elementary schools for the Mileage Club, an innovative program that encourages kids and families to walk after school and during recess. Kids receive special "charm" tokens for the miles they log. The program has already proven to be a huge success in local schools – the students of Gary Knox Elementary have logged enough miles to walk around the world twice.

Grants are also available to non-profits and community groups to design their own obesity interventions. For instance, local Girl Scouts are designing Healthy Lifestyle Badges, and the San Luis Community Center engages kids in healthy after-school activities.

“Yuma County has a 30 percent obesity rate, which is well above the national average”, said Wayne Steffey, Executive Director of the Foundation of YRMC. “Through the Mileage Club and innovative programs developed by local groups, we are addressing the obesity epidemic head on in our community.”

Grant applications are due May 1. Additionally, the Foundation is inviting businesses and individuals to sponsor the program by adopting a school or organization.

The mission of the Foundation of Yuma Regional Medical Center is to support a health community through philanthropy. Qualified as a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization, the Foundation relies on donations to support community programs such as healthcare scholarships and the Drive for School Supplies.

For more information, contact Shirley Phillips at 336-2406 or e-mail

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