NEW ORLEANS, LA–On Saturday, April 27, the City of New Orleans Fit NOLA program will host the first local Play Streets event from 9am to noon at A.L. Davis Park, 2400 Washington Avenue. The event, made possible through funding from Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) and Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), is designed to encourage fun physical activity in neighborhoods.
Themed "The Power of One," the day will feature several fitness activities that help to improve strength, flexibility, agility and balance including: basketball drills and games, soccer, relay races, potato sack races and tug of war.
“Partnership for a Healthier America and Blue Cross Blue Shield have been wonderful partners for Fit NOLA and our local community, and have given us the resources to focus on safe places to play for our children and families,” said City Health Commissioner Dr. Karen DeSalvo. “Events like Play Streets allow our kids to be active and teach them the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle. This will help us towards our goal of being one of the fittest cities in America by 2018, our 300th birthday.”
The Play Streets event is held in conjunction with the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission Teen Council's Global Youth Service Day (GYSD). Now in its 25th year, GYSD recognizes the positive impact that young people have on their communities 365 days a year. GYSD is celebrated in more than 100 countries with youth-led service projects.
“We’re so proud of our 54 Teen Council members, who represent 24 schools throughout New Orleans,” said Victor N. Richard, III, NORDC CEO. “Since forming in 2012, Teen Council members have produced an impressive array of educational, recreational, mentoring and volunteer activities that have positively impacted thousands of young people in our city.”
The impact on activity rates from Play Streets is expected to be significant. Pioneer programs have already shown that when given the choice between participating in Play Streets or a sedentary activity, the majority of children chose the more active option of Play Streets. The benefits went beyond children’s health, too. Local economies can profit from the increased foot traffic that Play Streets brings to the businesses in the area.
At least two more Play Streets events will be held in New Orleans this year. Details about the location and dates of the Play Streets events in New Orleans can be found online at www.ahealthieramerica.org/playstreets.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana
Founded in New Orleans in 1934, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is the oldest and largest Louisiana-based health insurance company. Blue Cross is a private, fully taxed mutual company, owned by policyholders—not shareholders—and governed by a local Board of Directors. It is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
The company and its subsidiaries provide group and individual health insurance plans, life and disability insurance, group voluntary products and administrative services to more than one out of every four Louisiana residents. With headquarters in Baton Rouge and eight district offices, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana employs nearly 2,000 Louisianans who are committed to improving the lives of its customers by providing them with health guidance and affordable access to quality care.
Learn more on the company’s website at www.bcbsla.com or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/bluecrossla. Learn more about the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation on its website at www.OurHomeLouisiana.org.
About Partnership for a Healthier America
Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) is devoted to working with the private sector to ensure the health of our nation’s youth by solving the childhood obesity crisis. In 2010, PHA was created in conjunction with – but independent from – First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! effort. PHA is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization that is led by some of the nation’s most respected health and childhood obesity experts. PHA brings together public, private and nonprofit leaders to broker meaningful commitments and develop strategies to end childhood obesity. Most importantly, PHA ensures that commitments made are commitments kept by working with unbiased third parties to monitor and publicly report on the progress its partners are making. For more information about PHA, please visit www.aHealthierAmerica.org and follow PHA on Twitter @PHAnews.
About the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association
The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) is a national federation of 38 independent, community-based and locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for 100 million members – one in three Americans. For more information on BCBSA and its member companies, please visit http://bcbs.com, connect with BCBSA on Facebook , check out BCBSA videos on YouTube or follow BCBSA on Twitter for up-to-date information.
About Fit NOLA
In response to First Lady Michelle Obama’s call to action, Mayor Mitch Landrieu launched the Fit NOLA Partnership in June 2012 to raise awareness, build capacity and set standards regarding nutritional and physical fitness in New Orleans. Through a sector based, data driven approach, over 130 organizations have united to move New Orleans towards becoming one of the top ten fittest cities in America by 2018, the 300th anniversary of New Orleans. Follow Fit NOLA on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/FitNola) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/FitNOLA).
About NORDC Teen Council
The NORDC Teen Council empowers young people, ages 12-17, by developing a social growth environment through structured programs. These emerging leaders actively participate in civic and community engagement by designing and implementing city-wide teen programming.