New Report: Healthier Generation Advances Physical, Mental, and Social-Emotional Health for Millions of Children
2021 highlights include launch of major assessment, health-promoting resources for schools and families
December 14, 2021 – The Alliance for a Healthier Generation (Healthier Generation), a national children’s health organization, today released its annual report on the impact of its programs, which take an integrated, equity-centered approach to advancing whole child health at school and in the home. As the result of Healthier Generation’s work to date, more than 31 million children are benefiting from increased access to nutritious foods, high quality physical activity, improved social-emotional skills, and tobacco-free environments.
Major successes in 2021 include:
Launch of the Thriving Schools Integrated Assessment, a comprehensive self-evaluation tool that helps schools and districts promote student and staff health and academic achievement, developed in partnership with Kaiser Permanente
Continued engagement of families through the Kohl’s Healthy at Home initiative, offering bilingual resources and activities to strengthen social-emotional health, physical activity, and healthy eating habits
Debut of the digital Wellness Policy Builder, a one-of-a-kind tool that helps educators establish federally-compliant local school wellness policies tailored to the needs of their communities, with support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Creation of an equity-centered hub of vaccine-related tools and information to help schools address systemic inequities by improving vaccine access, information, and confidence
The organization’s approach to fostering mental, physical, and social-emotional health begins with a deep examination of existing structures and needed supports to determine the most effective, culturally-informed strategies. Healthier Generation centers equity in its collaborations with educators, families, and community partners, engaging stakeholders at all levels to create safe, stable environments where all children can thrive.
“Bearing witness to the experiences of the past year has provided an opportunity to reexamine and redefine ‘health’ in more equitable and inclusive ways,” says Kathy Higgins, chief executive officer at Healthier Generation. “In 2021, we deepened our resolve to uplift those who disproportionately shoulder the burden of this collective health crisis.”
Across the nation, 53,000 schools, districts, and out-of-school time sites have been served by Healthier Generation programs to more equitably advance whole child health — with 70% located in underserved communities (Title I). The organization’s resources to support healthier home environments have reached 4 million families, 64% of which are from BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) communities. In addition, Healthier Generation has activated 75 national and local health equity partners in its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, developing a portfolio of resources that have been accessed 85,000 times.
The full report is available at healthiergeneration.org/annual-reports/fy2021.
About Alliance for a Healthier Generation
Alliance for a Healthier Generation is a leading children's health organization that advances equitable whole child health. Driven by our passion to ensure that every mind, every body, and every young person is healthy and ready to succeed, our work has reached over 31 million young people across the country. To learn more and help make a difference, visit HealthierGeneration.org and join us on Facebook and Twitter.