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Healthiest Weight Champions

By Maggie Hall, PIO - Contact Number: 727-824-6908

September 18, 2014

Let Your Residents Know Your Community is Healthy 

DOH’s Healthy Weight Community Champions Nominations Now Open

Pinellas governments, you can show your residents and visitors you’ve got what it takes to be called a Healthy Weight Community Champion.

The Florida Department of Health (DOH) invites local governments across the state to complete a nomination as part of the Healthy Weight Community Champion recognition program. The program highlights local government efforts to increase physical activity and improve nutrition as part of State Surgeon General John A. Armstrong, MD’s Healthiest Weight Florida initiative, a public-private collaboration to help Florida's children and adults make consistent, informed choices about healthy eating and active living. This is the second year of the recognition program.

In 2014, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Largo and Pinellas Park were selected as Healthy Weight Champions for their health and fitness initiatives. Governments that are selected receive a special logo that they can use on promotional materials and city documents.

All local governments are invited to submit a best practice policy that makes healthy eating and physical activity accessible to its residents and visitors.

Here are some of the initiatives that the 2014 Pinellas Champions included in their winning nominations:

  • In Clearwater, bike and walking trails lead to markets selling healthy food.
  • Largo’s Play Unplugged event brings families together for active fun that frees them from sitting in front of computer or TV screens.
  • Pinellas Park’s Community Garden offers raised garden boxes to residents for a small fee so they can grow their own produce.
  • St. Petersburg’s 35 miles of trails for recreation and fitness provide choices for bikers, walkers and skaters.

In 2014, 38 communities across Florida were named Healthy Community Champions. Governments in Pinellas are encouraged to apply for the 2015 competition. To make the process easier, DOH is providing technical assistance during monthly webinars.

Webinar dates and times are:
* Tuesday, Sept. 30 at 2 PM
* Wednesday, Oct. 15 at 10 AM
* Tuesday, Nov. 4 at 2 PM

Submissions will be accepted until the close of business on Friday, Nov. 14. The winning communities will be announced and recognized on Jan. 5, 2015.
For information, go to http://www.healthiestweightflorida.com/recognition.html. To register for the webinars, email HealthiestWeight@FLHealth.gov.

For information about the Florida Department of Health in Pinellas County, go to www.PinellasHealth.com.