Healthy Héroes wellness program expands in 2023

PROVIDENCE – Healthy Héroes, an after-school program designed to help children and their families develop healthy exercise and nutrition habits, is expanding to more schools in Pawtucket and Central Falls in 2023.

“Building healthy habits for Pawtucket’s children and families is such a critical component of overall community health, especially as we are still dealing with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Pawtucket Mayor Donald R. Grebien.

The wellness program is funded by Tufts Health Plan, a Point32Health company, and collaborates with several local community organizations. This year it ran two pilot programs, including more than 48 students at Ella Risk and Veterans Memorial elementary schools in Central Falls, and Curvin McCabe and Potter Burns elementary schools in Pawtucket.

“Improving community health has been one of my top priorities as mayor, and through programs like Healthy Héroes, we’re empowering our youngest residents to get active and make healthy choices at a young age,” said Central Falls Mayor Maria Rivera. “After-school activities are the perfect opportunity to promote physical activity and smart food choices, especially when they’re done with local community organizations. I’m excited that the Healthy Héroes pilot program is seeing promising early results and will be expanding to serve more of our children and families in 2023.”

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The eight-week program includes a series of games and activities designed to encourage students to be more active and teach them about making better food choices.

“We know that instilling healthy habits in families early pays huge long-term dividends in terms of reducing childhood obesity and other weight-related health conditions, which can often become chronic,” said Domenic Delmonico, executive director for public plans at Tufts Health Plan. “This collaboration empowers children and families through simple and fun physical activities and nutritional education to build lifelong exercise and healthy eating habits. It is a true example that when public, private and nonprofit organizations come together, anything is possible. I want to thank all those involved, including Pawtucket and Central Falls, for helping us to continue our mission of guiding and empowering healthier lives for everyone.”

Claudia Chiappa is a PBN staff writer. You may contact her at Chiappa@PBN.com.

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