UnitedHealthcare offers students grants to fight obesity

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Youth Service America and United Healthcare are launching the fourth year of Health Heroes grants to fight childhood obesity in Colorado.

During the most recent cycle, United awarded $2,000 in grants to four Colorado-based, youth-led organizations.

UnitedHealth Heroes is a service-learning, health literacy initiative designed to encourage young people, working with educators and youth leaders, to create and implement local hands-on programs to fight childhood obesity.

Grants of up to $1,000 will be awarded to programs that demonstrate a clear understanding of the health risks associated with childhood obesity, propose creative solutions to fight obesity in schools and communities, and can be easily implemented, scaled and measured. In addition, each grant engages youth in service-learning, an effective teaching and learning strategy that supports student academic achievement and helps students develop skills for the workplace.

In Colorado, about 27.2 percent of children ages 10 to 17 are considered obese. Nationwide, one in three children is obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To obtain an application, visit www.YSA.org/Heroes. Applications must be submitted online before midnight Oct. 17. Grant recipients will be notified in December and January.