Let’s Move Pittsburgh, a program of Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, has announced its 2016 Champion Schools grant recipients, providing 40 Allegheny County education centers with a total of $40,000 in grants to support new and existing health and wellness projects that will affect more than 7,500 local children. These awards were generously funded by the Heinz Endowments.
Pitt's University Child Development Center (UCDC) was named a 2016 Champion School. Under the theme of "Teaching Kids to Grow and Cook Food," the UCDC plans to use the funds to implement additional new and innovative gardening techniques on their playground and in the classrooms. All children at the Center will participate in growing, taking care of, harvesting and cooking the variety of vegetables and herbs that they will plant. The UCDC staff is honored and excited to implement their vision with the children and hope for great results that will encourage healthy eating and excitement for working together in our garden.
Champion Schools applicant projects were judged according to need, sustainability and impact. Projects are related to the following themes: Bag the Junk — Increasing Healthy Food and Nutritional Education in Schools, Getting Kids Moving, and Teaching Kids to Grow and Cook Food. The highest scoring applications received up to $1,000 in grant funds to back efforts ranging from the creation of learning gardens, Zumba nights, rollerblading fitness programs and many more creative and exciting initiatives.