The recent article about the difficult and sometimes devastating effects of obesity ("Eating Myself to Death," Oct. 7) serves as a poignant reminder of the urgent need to address the childhood obesity epidemic. Unfortunately, Pennsylvania is one of only three states where childhood obesity rates continue to increase. We must take action to ensure our children are given the opportunity to live the healthiest lives possible.
In response, the United Way of Allegheny County established fitUnited Pittsburgh. Over the past year, more than 250 partner organizations made the fitUnited commitment to improve nutrition and physical activity levels in children. As a result, 800 kids at the Boys & Girls Club of Western Pennsylvania receive a healthy snack each week courtesy of Paragon Foods. Nike donated $8,000 in sporting equipment, and Eat'n Park gave away 25,000 free kids soup, salad and fruit bar vouchers.
Additionally, we are working with the YMCA, YWCA, Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank, Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children, Paragon Foods and Consumers Produce Co. to bring healthy snacks to children at home-based daycare providers in Homewood.
We ask our community leaders, businesses and individuals to stand with us to show that the health of the children in our community is important.
Visit uwacfitunited.org to pledge your support and get actionable ideas for how you can help local children live the best lives possible. They are counting on us.
United Way of Allegheny County
First Published October 14, 2013 8:00 PM