Limited grant monies available for health-promoting initiatives

A limited number of community grants are available in Kansas to help youth and adults from small towns work together to encourage health-promoting physical activity.

The “Get It – Do It!” grants reflect the collaboration of the Kansas PRIDE Program, the School of Family Studies and Human Services at Kansas State University and K-State Research and Extension, said Elaine Johannes, a K-State Research and Extension youth development specialist and a spokesperson for the effort.

The goal, she said, is to encourage youth and adults to identify and create intergenerational activities and opportunities to promote physical activity and health in their community.

This is the fourth year the grants have been made available and previous projects have varied, she said. Some communities developed walking trails and others purchased exercise equipment for a community center, taught residents how to use it and supported fitness classes. Such collaborations encourage intergenerational friendships and build leadership skills among youth.

In Mount Hope, discussions between older and younger generations shed new light on a shared interest?dancing?and prompted community dances in which older adults are teaching youth ballroom dancing, Johannes said. In addition, Mount Hope youth are showing their elders a few new dance moves.

One of the benefits of the grant program is the opportunity to promote physical activity in a way that works for individual communities, she said.

Funding of up to $3,000 per community is awarded by competitive grants and is available to communities currently enrolled in the Kansas PRIDE Program and/or planning to enroll in it. The PRIDE Program is a volunteer driven, grass-roots community and economic development effort co-administered by K-State Research and Extension and the Kansas Department of Commerce.

For more information about the grants call Jamie Menon in the Kansas PRIDE office at 785-532-5840, Nadine Sigle at 785-565-2726 or nsigle@ksu.edu or Elaine Johannes at 785-532-7720 or ejohanne@ksu.edu.

Applicants are encouraged to involve youth, school and community organizations and groups in their proposals.

The deadline for the 2011 grant applications/proposals is Feb. 1.

Awards will be announced in March.

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