Our programs transform the spaces where children learn, inspiring them to take charge of their health
Our school and community-based programming aims to give children and youth access to nutritious food, regular physical activity, and knowledge of healthy lifestyle habits. We collaborate with school and community leaders to provide support and transform the way we think about children’s nutrition and physical activity, from early care and education through high school to afterschool. Our goal is to promote healthy, sustainable habits throughout a child’s lifespan.
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We accomplish this through:
Dedicated onsite support for children’s health and well-being.
Professional development for educators and community leaders.
Child and family engagement.
Teaching best practices for nutrition and physical activity.
Directly engaging youth as leaders and co-curators in program development.
Leveraging community voice for culturally relevant change.
We’re constantly keeping a pulse on the latest guidelines for nutrition and physical activity from the CDC and other health-centric organizations. Our programming reflects the most up-to-date, proven methods for instilling healthy lifestyle habits in children.
Below is a sampling of the programs we offer in and out of the classroom. For a comprehensive list of our program services and trainings, click here.
Empowering Healthy Choices in Schools, Homes, and Communities:
We partner with educators and community members to transform their spaces into healthy, active environments for children to flourish. As part of the planning and relationship-building phase of the work, a site-based team collaborates with HealthMPowers to use an appropriate and validated self-assessment tool to examine current nutrition and physical activity practices, policies, systems and environments (PSEs). This involves incorporating age-appropriate physical activity, nutritious choices, and teaching health-enhancing behaviors to children, youth, and families. We support healthy shifts in the community’s culture, from incoporating physical activity throughout the school day to the addition of school gardens which produce fresh fruits and vegetables Our social marketing campaign, Be A Health Hero: Eat, Drink, Move, is reinforced through posters, banners, and digital messaging that communicates a common call to action. We also offer hands-on nutrition education through gardening and cooking classes. Our coaching and support team allows for long-term, sustainable change in the communities we serve. Our program is one of the most comprehensive of its kind, touching over 180 early care and education sites, K-12 schools, after-school programs, and food outlets across Georgia.
Level: Early Care and Education, Grades K-12, & Out of School
This material was funded by USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program — SNAP. This institution is an equal opportunity provider. For the USDA’s full non-discrimination statement, click here.
Girls Empowering Movement (GEM) Initiative:
Girls are at the center of this one-of-a-kind effort to increase physical activity and the fitness levels of Georgia’s middle school girls. Currently, only 51% of girls have healthy aerobic capacity in 5th grade. By 12th grade, that number drops to 31%. This program provides girls with access to regular physical activity while empowering them to become change- agents themselves. The program, designed by girls for girls, debuted in the summer of 2021 with a goal to motivate 200,000 girls to get moving. Now thousands of girls across Georgia are engaging with programming, resources, and a peer network to get active, build leadership skills, and develop the social and emotional tools needed to live happy, healthy lives.
Level: Grades 5-8
“Some girls really don’t feel like they’re worth what they really are. GEM (Girls Empowering Movement), as the name [suggests], will make girls understand that they’re worth as much as a diamond.”
– Ayshiah, Age 13, GEM Leadership Team
Power Up for 30:
Power Up for 30 is a statewide initiative to increase physical activity opportunities to incorporate an additional 30 minutes of physical activity—outside of PE, every day for every child and youth. Power Up for 30 gives educators, schools, and sites resources, strategies, and best practices for creating an active environment that can increase attendance, focus, and overall health for all of Georgia’s children and youth. This program emerged from research demonstrating a strong relationship between physical activity and brain function, translating into more academic achievement, better classroom behavior, and reduced depression and anxiety.
Level: Grades K-12 & Out of School
“Adding Power Up for 30 to our Positive Behavior Intervention System (PBIS) program really changed things for us. We saw a 75% decline in discipline referrals from one year to the next.”
– Dr. Kimberly Anderson, Principal of Excel Academy
HealthMPowers offers virtual training and resources for conducting the FitnessGram assessment and using the results to inform strategies and programming to improve student’s overall health and fitness. Grade specific fitness portfolios are available to engage youth as leaders on their journey to lifelong fitness by assessing current fitness levels, setting goals, and developing individual plans for improvement
Level: Grades 4-12
Student Health Advocate (SHA) Program:
Our Student Health Advocate Program provides students the platform to be heard by centering and elevating their opinions, attitudes, experiences, and knowledge to actively engage them as solution-minded experts. Student Health Advocates host events, plant gardens, implement food pantries and create other sustainable nutrition and physical activity outcomes at their schools. We believe students have the power to shift the culture of their communities, and our Student Health Advocate Program champions these voices to effect positive change. This peer-to-peer work increases students’ knowledge, motivates them to adopt healthier habits, and strengthens their social, psychological, and emotional health.
Level: Grades 4-12
“We’ve seen real results in how our kids make healthy food choices, and their interest in physical activity. HealthMPowers has created opportunities for our kids to think critically about healthy decisions, obstacles to these decisions, and the importance of investing in their bodies in ways that promote health.”
– Adrianne Penner, Senior Director, Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta
Georgia Nutrition and Physical Activity Assessment:
The Georgia Nutrition and Physical Activity Assessment is an interactive online assessment tool designed to support early care and education providers with environmental policy and practice improvements in healthy eating and physical activity among children, staff, and families. This tool offers wellness resources specifically aligned with each assessment indicator to ensure providers make effective, sustainable changes within their early care settings. Currently, HealthMPowers has piloted the assessment with nearly 200 providers statewide, including 40 through our partnership with Georgia Organics and Quality Care for Children.
Level: Early Care and Education