The Centers for Disease Control recommends that children be physically active for at least 60 minutes a day. Unfortunately, only half of America's young people reach that mark. Healthi Kids aims to address this gap. The initiative works with parents, students, teachers and community members to advocate for physical activity and unstructured play through daily school recess, more inviting play spaces in neighborhoods and safer walking routes to schools. Responding to the campaign's advocacy efforts, the Rochester City School District adopted a mandatory daily recess policy and banned the withholding of recess as punishment. Find out more at:
The first step to ensuring good nutrition for children is to make healthy food the default choice. Healthi Kids works to improve meals and snack offerings in schools, increase participation in the Summer Food Service program and expand the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables in corner stores. The initiative also encourages breastfeeding, which research has shown lowers children's risk of becoming obese later in life.
Ways to build a culture of health for our area's children:
- Ask for guidelines for nutritious food and beverages at school events
- Encourage walking or biking to school
- Lead a "Walking School Bus" and invite nearby families to walk with you
- Switch to fundraisers that sell non-junk food items
- Volunteer to supervise playground and recess activities
- Petition your town or city for bike lanes
- Join Healthi Kids on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.
October 13, 2017
Community members celebrated two years of effort to make Rochester's neighborhoods safe and accessible for all kids to walk, bike and play.
August 29, 2017
Children and families from two tightly-knit Rochester neighborhoods gathered to host Play Streets, a pilot event introduced this year by the Healthi Kids Coalition through their PlayROCs campaign. Play Streets gives kids the opportunity to safely play, beautify their neighborhoods, and participate in new activities.
June 01, 2017
Children, families and neighbors gathered to celebrate the grand opening of Phillis Wheatley Community Library's vibrant "Story Walk," which is part of the Healthi Kids Coalition's "Play ROCs" campaign. The Story Walk is an interactive play space that celebrates play, literacy, and local history.
May 18, 2017
Cameron Community Ministries' after school program hosted its fifth annual Peace Walk through the Lyell/Otis Neighborhood to call for a safer neighborhood.
November 22, 2016
Advocates for play urged Rochester’s City Council to put kids first in the city’s comprehensive plan update to ensure Rochester is the best city to live, work and play. The advocacy effort was led by the Healthi Kids Coalition, an initiative of Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency, as part of the PlayROCs campaign.
September 22, 2016
Healthi Kids Coalition of Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency today announced it with partner with the Rochester Public Library and City of Rochester to create an interactive Story Walk and playful sidewalks at Phillis Wheatley Community Library.
July 08, 2016
Three years of a coordinated, communitywide effort to get more youth in the city of Rochester to participate in free summer meals paid off with a 24.3 percent increase in meals served in 2015.
May 20, 2016
For the first time, Rochester is being honored with a 2016 Playful City USA designation. The national recognition, given by KABOOM, honors cities and towns across the country for making their cities more playable.
May 02, 2016
Kids in the City of Rochester are more likely to be hit by cars than in other parts of Monroe County, which may prevent families from allowing them to play outside, according to one of several new data briefs from Healthi Kids.
October 09, 2015
Healthi Kids brings "Playworks" training to cafeteria staff to help build a healthier lunchroom environment for city students.
September 18, 2015
August 28, 2015
When food assistance is cut, families often resort to purchasing high calorie foods that are filling to strech their food dollars.
August 28, 2015
Let’s all together strike two huge thumbs up to the Rochester City School District for adding a clause to their new Student Behavior Resource Manual that bans recess being taken away as a form of punishment.
August 26, 2015
School of the Arts parent weighs in on the importance of recess to "play, to have a break, run around and have fun".