Pontotoc County 4-H Teen Leaders were recently awarded grant funds as part of a grant awarded by the National 4-H Council; funded by the Walmart Foundation, Inc.; and handled through the Oklahoma 4-H Foundation, Inc. A majority of the funds must be targeted to populations who would benefit from well-designed educational programs that increase knowledge in the areas of nutrition and healthy food choices, personal health, and fitness.
The teens have been working together to make the best better at Harris Park, the local park of Hammond Heights. Teen Leaders have used their grant fund money to repaint the basketball court, provide new metal nets for the goals, and paint playground equipment. They are in the process of having a new park sign made. Sunday, April 15th, 4-Hers will start their weekly educational programs for the children of Hammond Heights. They will provide these programs for four weeks. The programs will include information in the areas of nutrition and healthy food choices, personal health, and fitness. The programs will utilize the lessons provided in the Texas A & M University’s “Balancing Food and Play” curriculum. The curriculum has four educational goals aimed at promoting good nutrition and healthy weight among school-age children:
1. Promote increased fruit and vegetable consumption.
2. Encourage water as a beverage.
3. Reinforce the importance of at least 60 minutes of daily physical activity.
4. Encourage the limitation of screen time to less than 2 hours per day.
The community and county are encouraged to collaborate with the Hammond Heights area and its community leaders. Revitalization of this neighborhood is at the fore of the city’s agenda and there is no better way to begin a rebuilding than to lay a foundation of healthy habits in the children of that area.