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Spokane, Washington Joins the Let’s Move! Initiative

Spokane is ready to get moving in the fight against childhood obesity! During a joint press conference at a Spokane elementary school on Monday, February 7, I was joined by Spokane Mayor Mary Verner and regional health officials to highlight programs aimed at preventing childhood obesity.

At the event, in honor of the one-year anniversary of Let’s Move!, Mayor Verner proclaimed Spokane a Let’s Move! city, joining the hundreds of other cities and towns across the country who have pledged to address the epidemic of childhood obesity in their communities. Following our event, Mayor Verner was headed to a Spokane City Council meeting where she read and signed a proclamation announcing Spokane’s participating in Let’s Move!

Mayor Verner eloquently stated that “[o]ur kids are our future, and we have a responsibility to help them make healthy choices. The First Lady’s Let’s Move! campaign helps provide a fun way to keep our kids moving and engrain habits that will serve them well for a lifetime.”

Additional highlights of the event included:

  • Michael Senske, Chair of the Empire Health Foundation Board, announced the Foundation’s first strategic initiative focused on healthy lifestyles/obesity prevention. The Foundation will be investing their time and resources long-term to work with nonprofit organizations in the region to address health and wellness.
  • Rig Riggins, President and CEO of YMCA of the Inland Northwest, discussed the YMCA’s community efforts to address the health crises of obesity and related chronic diseases. Riggins highlighted the “Y Make a Better You” program partnership with Spokane Public Schools, which allows kids to enjoy fun physical activity and nutrition education in a caring environment. This program delivers healthy lifestyle resources at no cost to 4th through 6th graders who otherwise might not have access to the YMCA.

Students who participate in the program demonstrated some of the activities they participate in to learn more about nutrition, while being physically active!

Spokane’s efforts to be a healthy, active community are well underway, and I welcome them to the Let’s Move! campaign!