Iowa Governor Pledges Statewide Commitment to Child Health and Wellness through Fuel Up to Play 60

Iowa Governor Pledges Statewide Commitment to Child Health and Wellness through Fuel Up to Play 60

Governor Terry Branstad Joins Students, Dairy Farmers, Former Kansas City Chiefs Player at Capitol View Elementary School for Fuel Up to Play 60 Celebration

Today, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad pledged his commitment to child health and wellness through Fuel Up to Play 60, an in-school health and wellness program that encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods and achieve 60 minutes of physical activity every day. The Governor joined Lieutenant Governor, Kim Reynolds; Secretary of Agriculture, Bill Northey; Director of Department of Public Health, Dr. Mariannette Miller-Meeks; Director of Department of Education, Dr. Jason Glass; the program advisor and student body from Capitol View Elementary School in Des Moines, Iowa; former Kansas City Chiefs player, Eddie Kennison; Iowa dairy farmers; and members of Midwest Dairy Council to sign the symbolic pledge.

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Governor Terry Branstad Joins Students, Dairy Farmers, Former Kansas City Chiefs Player
at Capitol View Elementary School for Fuel Up to Play 60 Celebration

At a celebratory school assembly at Capitol View Elementary School, the Governor praised the commitment to wellness from Iowa students and pledged his support for Fuel Up to Play 60, indicating the program is a positive next step toward helping Iowa students achieve pathways to better nutrition and fitness for life. “Fuel Up to Play 60 will play a key role in helping achieve our goal of making Iowa the healthiest state in the nation,” Governor Branstad said. “The program sets our schoolchildren up for success by providing healthy food choices and encouraging exercise or play for at least 60 minutes every day.”

Lieutenant Governor Reynolds spoke about impact the program will have on future generations. “The children in our state are the future of Iowa. I’m thankful that Fuel Up to Play 60 teaches healthy habits that will help improve the quality of their lives in years to come.”

Launched by National Dairy Council and the National Football League, in collaboration with the United States Department of Agriculture, Fuel Up to Play 60 has activated more than eight million students in 70,000 schools nationwide, including more than 436,000 students in Iowa, to be healthy, get active and make a difference. Today, more than 1,100 schools across Iowa are designated Fuel Up to Play 60 schools.

“As dairy farmers, we have always cared about legacy and the importance of passing on a better future to the next generation,” said dairy farmer Jason Brockhaus, from Ocheyedan, Iowa. “To date, the dairy community has awarded more than $129,000 in funding to Iowa schools to help jumpstart and champion school wellness efforts.”

Any school in Iowa can enroll in the free program, thus becoming eligible to apply for funds to help increase awareness of and access to nutrient-rich foods and physical activity opportunities for students. As part of Fuel Up to Play 60, schools can receive a free Quick Start Resources kit with planning tools and in-school collateral materials to help them implement healthy eating and physical fitness plans. The program, now in its second year, also encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods (low-fat and fat-free dairy, fruits, vegetables and whole grains) and achieve at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. The ultimate goal is to ensure changes made at school are sustainable and to provide children with more opportunities to be physically active and choose nutrient-rich foods.

“As a physical education teacher, I am excited and proud to have the opportunity for Capitol View Elementary to get involved with Fuel Up to Play 60. We already have been taking physical activity opportunities outside of the walls of the gym. Our teachers and students engage in daily brain breaks, which get our kids up dancing, moving, and re-focuses them for learning. Fuel Up to Play 60 is going to provide additional skills and opportunities for our student to lead healthy lives, including the importance of fueling their bodies with proper nutrition. I would like to thank Governor Branstad for recognizing the huge need for physical education and to guide our students on the path to healthier lifestyles by endorsing Fuel Up to Play 60,” says Monica Sherman, physical education teacher and Fuel Up to Play 60 program advisor at Capitol View Elementary.

To learn more about Fuel Up to Play 60, visit FuelUpToPlay60.com or MidwestDairy.com.

1.31.2012