Illinois, nicknamed "the Prairie State," is known today for much more than its prairies. The Midwestern state is made up of farmland, forests, rolling hills and wetlands. Its northeast corner borders Lake Michigan and is home to the third largest city in the country: Chicago.

Despite all that Illinois has to offer its residents of all ages, a startling one-third of Illinois children are overweight or obese, putting them at risk for serious health problems.

The Alliance for a Healthier Generation, thanks to support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Target, is working with communities throughout the state to make it easier for kids to lead healthier lives.


Our Work in Illinois

In Illinois, we’re making it easier for kids to develop healthy habits.

More than 1,350 schools serving nearly 756,000 students across the state have joined Healthier Generation’s Healthy Schools Program, creating healthier school environments for children to thrive. Since 2007, 51 Illinois schools have been recognized with National Healthy Schools Awards for their outstanding efforts.

We’ve also made it easier for nearly 13,500 youth in 88 out-of-school time programs to eat right and move more through our Healthy Out-of-School Time Initiative.


Success Stories

One thing that’s very exciting about the Healthy Schools Program is the team approach. We had our food service director, teachers, nurse – they are all involved. It’s a team effort.

Kimberly Norton
Principal, Northeast Elementary School

Healthier Generation really helped us define healthy. We used a lot of resources like the Product Calculator for Smart Snacks that helped us create a common definition for our community of what being healthy meant.

Allison Slade
Founder and Executive Director, Namaste Charter School


From Our Program Manager 

Our Healthy Schools Program Manager lives and works in Illinois, supporting our work in schools. Hear from her about the impact we’re making in Illinois.

Schools across Chicago and suburban Cook County have made lasting changes to their school culture through Healthier Generation’s Healthy Schools Program – ensuring that all students have the opportunity to learn in a healthy environment and succeed in the future.

Julia Goetten
Healthy Schools Program Manager, Cook County, IL
Program Managers

Support Our Work

Contact Carly and make your contribution to children's health in Illinois.