Though the U.S. Census Bureau classifies West Virginia as a southern state, its northern panhandle extends to Pennsylvania and Ohio, giving the state a mixed regional identity. It is, however, the only state that is entirely within the borders of what is commonly defined as “Appalachia.” With its geographic variety, West Virginia is a haven for outdoor recreation activities such as skiing, fishing, whitewater rafting and mountain biking.
But despite the many ways for its residents to stay active, nearly 34 percent of the state's children and adolescents are overweight or obese, putting them at risk for serious health problems.
Nearly 18 percent of West Virginia's more than 1.8 million residents live below the poverty level,* posing additional challenges to accessing the resources kids need to grow up healthy.
Thanks to support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Alliance for a Healthier Generation is working with communities throughout the state to make it easier for kids to lead healthier lives.
Our Work in West Virginia
In West Virginia, we’re making it easier for kids to develop healthy habits.
More than 615 schools serving over 240,700 students across the state have joined Healthier Generation's Healthy Schools Program, creating healthier school environments for children to thrive. Since 2007, 23 West Virginia schools have been recognized with National Healthy Schools Awards for their outstanding efforts.
We’ve also made it easier for more than 275 youth in out-of-school time programs to eat right and move more through our Healthy Out-of-School Time Initiative.
Hear from healthy school champions from just two of the many community stakeholders and schools we work with in West Virginia: West Virginia Department of Education and Crescent Elementary School, enrolled in the Healthy Schools Program since 2014.