Atlanta, GA, January, 13, 2014 – On Saturday, one family was named a health and wellness ambassador after competing in a multi-week healthy active living challenge. The Reed family from Keesler Air Force Base Youth Center in Biloxi, Miss. emerged victorious in Boys & Girls Clubs of America's (BGCA) 4th Annual Triple Play Fit Family Challenge, supported by The Coca-Cola Company and WellPoint Foundation. After competing in a six-week challenge, the military family which includes mom Tracy, dad Wallace and their six children ranging in age from 7 months to 16 years old, earned their way to the finale event hosted by three-time Olympic Champion and Boys & Girls Club Ambassador Jackie Joyner-Kersee at Venice Beach, Calif. The Reed family joined four other finalist families and successfully navigated through a challenging obstacle course, competed in a nutrition based game show and performed a family fitness routine.
Showcasing their family’s commitment to healthy active living, the Reed Family will represent BGCA and partners, The Coca-Cola Company and WellPoint Foundation, as Triple Play Family Ambassadors for the year, during which they will inspire, motivate and connect with other families on the importance of youth and family health. The Triple Play program encourages young people and families to focus on making better food choices (MIND), increasing physical activity (BODY) and spending more quality time together as a family (SOUL).
A true advocate of these initiatives, the military family hosted a 5K race within their community to spread the word about family fitness while also raising funds for the Philippines Typhoon disaster relief. With Wallace, dad of the Reed Family, recently deployed to Afghanistan, the Reeds are working together to make serious, long-lasting healthy lifestyle changes that the entire family can implement. These adjustments, which the Reeds contributed to the Fit Family Challenge Blog, include reading and understanding food labels, swapping out fattier meats for a leaner cut, implementing portion control and moderation, and incorporating more snacks with proteins, fruits and veggies into their meal plan. In addition to changes to their nutrition, the Reeds stress the importance of family time, getting the kids involved in fun fitness challenges and checking in with Wallace on a routine basis to share their progress. It is this type of commitment paired with the family’s holistic approach to health that positions the Reed Family as great Triple Play leaders.
"The Triple Play Fit Family Challenge presented us with an opportunity to come together as a family and empowered us to start making healthier choices," said Tracy Reed, mother of the Reed Family. "We have learned that it is important to make decisions as a family and to challenge each other daily. We love to find exciting new fruits and veggies to bring into our diets and it is always fun for the little kids to incorporate unique activities into exercise routines."
As the winner, the Reeds will not only serve as Triple Play Family Ambassadors but also receive an active, healthy family vacation including an all-expense paid trip to the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo. All finalists received Triple Play-inspired Prize Packs, which included items donated by Coca-Cola and WellPoint Foundation. The Prize Pack included a variety of exercise equipment, along with games and other items to make family time more fun. And as a special treat, WellPoint, Inc. gifted each family with tickets to Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif.
"We are extremely proud of the dedication that the families put into the 4th Annual Triple Play Fit Family Challenge," said Wayne B. Moss, BGCA’s Senior Director of Healthy Lifestyles, Program, Training & Youth Development Services. "Boys & Girls Clubs of America believes living a healthy active lifestyle is critical to the overall wellbeing of today’s youth – empowering our families with a pathway to a great future."
The Triple Play Fit Family Challenge is a national competition that incorporates the principles of Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s Triple Play program into family lives. More than 200 families entered the Fit Family Challenge when it launched in October 2013 and as the nation prepared for the holiday season’s indulgences, BGCA families spent six weeks learning and practicing healthy eating habits (MIND), were physically active (BODY) and spent quality time with each other (SOUL). Challenge activities included trying new fruits and vegetables and eating smaller portions; incorporating fun and unique physical fitness activities into their daily routines; and participating more family-centered activities.
"The Fit Family Challenge takes physical activity and nutrition education - the most important, teachable components of health and wellness – and puts them in a fun, family program," said Jim Lactaoen, Vice President, West Region Sales, Coca-Cola North America. "Our work with this program helps to empower the families to be wellness leaders and in turn creates healthier, more sustainable communities."
The finalists were selected based on their involvement and efforts to make true healthy lifestyle adjustments during Phase 1 and 2 of the Challenge. The Top 5 families were coached by two well-known health advocates. Jackie Joyner-Kersee, as the "body" coach and overall spokesperson for the challenge and Dr. Val Jones, CEO of Better Health, LLC, a medical blogger network and education company, served as the "mind" coach served as great assets for each of the families throughout the challenge and were able to bring great insight from a health & wellness perspective. The other finalist families included: The Blair family from the McConnell Air Force Base Boys & Girls Club; The Brodsky family from the Detroit Arsenal Boys & Girls Club; The Livingston-Johnson family from the Boys & Girls Clubs of NW Georgia, and the Wells family from the Boys & Girls Club of the Central Savannah River Area
"The five families that took part in this competition are truly an inspiration," said Lance Chrisman, WellPoint Foundation executive director. "By combining healthy physical activities and nutrition with family time, they demonstrated that being healthy can not only be fun, but can also produce great memories that last a lifetime. WellPoint Foundation is proud to support the Boys & Girls Clubs of America because they share our commitment to improving health and strengthening our local communities."
BGCA offers all families a resource (in both English and Spanish) to help them get healthy as a family – the Triple Play Parents Game Plan. This at-home guide is available as a free download at www.bgca.org/tripleplay.
Triple Play: A Game Plan for the Mind, Body and SoulA Game Plan for the Mind, Body and Soul was launched in 2005 by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services with support from The Coca-Cola Company to encourage kids to eat healthier, become more physically active and increase their ability to engage in healthy relationships. A two-year study of more than 2,000 children ages 9-14 showed that Triple Play succeeded in getting them to exercise more, eat healthier foods and feel better about themselves. The study found that Triple Play kids increased to 90 percent of the federally recommended amount of daily exercise, which is 60 minutes a day for children, while their peers outside the program decreased to 78 percent. To date, Triple Play has helped more than one million kids learn the importance of physical activity and proper nutrition. In 2011, the WellPoint Foundation joined BGCA and Coca-Cola as a Triple Play sponsor. Learn more about the program at bgca.org/tripleplay.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of AmericaFor more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (GreatFutures.org) has enabled young people most in need to achieve Great Futures as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Today, more than 4,000 Clubs serve nearly 4 million young people annually through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs are located in cities, towns, public housing and on Native American lands throughout the country, and serve military families in BGCA-affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations worldwide. They provide a safe place, caring adult mentors, fun, friendship, and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours. Priority programs emphasize academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles. In a Harris Survey of alumni, 57 percent said the Club saved their lives. National headquarters are located in Atlanta. Learn more at www.bgca.org/facebook and bgca.org/twitter.
About The Coca-Cola CompanyThe Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world's most valuable brand, our Company's portfolio features 16 billion-dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of more than 1.8 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world's top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit Coca-Cola Journey at www.coca-colacompany.com, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo or check out our blog, Coca-Cola Unbottled, at www.coca-colablog.com.
About WellPoint FoundationThe WellPoint Foundation is the philanthropic arm of WellPoint, Inc. and through charitable contributions and programs, the Foundation promotes the inherent commitment of WellPoint, Inc. to enhance the health and well-being of individuals and families in communities that WellPoint, Inc. and its affiliated health plans serve. The Foundation focuses its funding on strategic initiatives that address and provide innovative solutions to health care challenges, as well as promoting the Healthy Generations Program, a multi-generational initiative that targets specific disease states and medical conditions. These disease states and medical conditions include: prenatal care in the first trimester, low birth weight babies, cardiac morbidity rates, long term activities that decrease obesity and increase physical activity, diabetes prevalence in adult populations, adult pneumococcal and influenza vaccinations and smoking cessation. The Foundation also coordinates the company’s annual associate giving campaign and provides a 50 percent match of associates’ campaign pledges. To learn more about the WellPoint Foundation, please visit www.wellpointfoundation.org and its blog at wellpointfoundation.tumblr.com.
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