Fuel Up to Play 60 was launched by the National Dairy Council, the National Football League and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to empower youth to improve nutrition and physical activity at their schools and in their communities.
The Southeast Dairy Association is proud to partner with the Atlanta Falcons and the Georgia Shape state team to make progress in combating Georgia’s childhood obesity epidemic. Since the program launched nationally in 2009, Fuel Up to Play 60 has worked with 70 percent of Georgia schools with 1,791 Adult Program Advisors leading the wellness movement in their schools.
Fuel Up to Play 60 addresses real-world circumstances of resource-strapped schools by offering funding opportunities and resources to help them make strides in meeting wellness goals. They also help districts implement their wellness policies. Resources provided by Fuel up to Play 60 include:
- Interactive Online Playbook: A collection of easy-to-do healthy eating and physical activity “plays” or strategies to help students “fuel up” with nutrient-dense foods and “get up and play” for at least 60 minutes a day.
- Student Ambassador Program: Student Ambassadors represent their school and their community and develop powerful leadership and communication skills. There are 226 student ambassadors in Georgia working with adults in their schools to take action and empower other students to lead a healthy lifestyle.
“This program has opened the door to the future by teaching leadership skills and healthy living, and offering life-changing experiences to students across the state of Georgia. The Atlanta Falcons and SUDIA partnership gave me a platform to raise awareness of how important a healthy lifestyle is to kids of all ages. Fuel Up to Play 60 offers kids a fun way to get healthy and get moving. I am thankful for the doors that Fuel Up to Play 60 opened for me and for the door that has been left open for other students to follow.” - Clay Stover, Fuel Up to Play 60 Georgia State Ambassador, North Hall Middle School
- Incentives, Rewards and Recognition: Fuel Up to Play 60 encourages and recognizes schools and students with tangible rewards and resources, including official NFL gear and NFL player and mascot appearances. Those schools that achieve Touchdown Status have completed all six steps and receive honorable national recognition and rewards. 146 schools in Georgia have achieved Touchdown status thus far.
- Funding: Fuel Up to Play 60, supported in part by U.S. dairy farmer families, provides funding of up to $4,000 for schools to implement healthy eating and physical activity plays. Funds help schools make lasting improvements to nutrition and physical activity programs.
To date, $754,247 has been awarded to help participating Georgia schools increase access to nutrient-rich foods and physical activity. Additionally, from 2014-16, Fuel Up to Play 60 provided $100,000 in grant funding to schools active with Georgia Shape’s Power Up for 30 Initiative with support from the Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation.
The next grant application deadline is June 14, 2017 with a second opportunity to apply in November for the 2017-18 school year.
Furthermore, the Southeast Dairy Association works with school nutrition directors across the state, providing nutrition equipment grant funding to help increase access to healthy school meals. Grants support the expansion of several school nutrition initiatives including: Alternative Breakfast Programs, Smoothie and Yogurt Programs, Afterschool Snacks Programs, Supper Programs and Summer Nutrition Programs.
“We are grateful to SUDIA for their support and partnership with Gwinnett County Schools,” said Ken Yant, nutrition director for Gwinnett County Schools. “Grant funding is helping increase meal participation and enhance healthy choices available in the cafeteria for our students.”