The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association is making it easier for kids to be Healthy For Good. During the last few weeks of the school year, the American Heart Association donated recess equipment to more than twenty schools across the region.

Kits included items like basketballs, jump ropes, frisbees, and more. Kit donations were made possible by local companies raising money in the Children’s Heart Challenge. The program challenged participating companies to raise at least $2,500 more for the 2018 Syracuse Heart Walk than their teams raised the year before. Twelve teams completed the challenge: AmeriCU Credit Union, Carrier, Carthage Area Hospital, Fust Charles Chambers LLP, Guthrie, Hancock Estabrook, Hearts & Hats, MetLife, St. Joseph’s Health, SUNY Broome, Syracuse Police, and Upstate Medical University.

The Children’s Health Challenge is part of the American Heart Association’s Healthy For Good initiative, which focuses on four pillars to improve health for all Americans – Move More, Add Color, Eat Smart, and Be Well. Research has shown that if children are overweight by their 12th birthday, there is a 70% chance those children will be overweight for the rest of their lives. By providing extra recess equipment, the Children’s Health Challenge can help kids Move More and teach healthy behaviors early in life.

“Student health and fitness is a priority in the Syracuse City School District,” Superintendent Jaime Alicea said. “Our district Health and Wellness Policy encourages students to be physically active both in school and out. These donations from the American Heart Association will help our students have fun and keep moving while enjoying their recess time. We appreciate the generosity of our community in helping to ensure that our students remain active, healthy and fit!” Alicea is also part of the American Heart Association’s National Superintendent Roundtable.

“Both healthy and unhealthy habits are formed young,” says Mary King, American Heart Association/American Stroke Association advisory board member and partner with Hancock Estabrook. “This equipment can help kids create a habit of physical activity. We are proud to be able to make this kind of impact on our community.”

Kits were donated to the following schools:

  • Carthage Central School District
    • Carthage Elementary School
  • Elmira City School District
    • Broadway Elementary School
  • Ithaca City School District
    • Beverly Elementary School
  • Maine-Endwell Central School District
    • Maine Memorial Elementary School
  • New York Mills Union Free School District
    • New York Mills Elementary School
  • Rome City School District
    • Francis Bellamy Elementary School
    • George R. Staley Elementary School
  • SUNY Broome
    • BC Center Preschool
  • Syracuse City School DistrictBellevue Elementary School
    • King Elementary School
    • Weeks Elementary School
    • Franklin Elementary School
    • Hughes Elementary
    • School
    • HW Smith Pre-K-8 School
    • McKinley Brighton Elementary School
    • Meachem Elementary School
    • Seymour Dual Language Academy
    • Van Duyn Elementary School
  • Utica City School District
    • Christopher Columbus Elementary School
  • Waverly Central School District
    • Elm Street Elementary
    • Lincoln Street Elementary