Harkin Wellness Grant - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Harkin Wellness Grant

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Linn County News Release (CEDAR RAPIDS) -The Linn County Board of Health announced today that it was awarded $123,853 in funding to improve the health of the community. The funding comes from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Harkin Wellness Grant program, and the Iowa State Legislature's support of local health initiatives. The board submitted a competitive grant application earlier this summer to the Iowa Department of Public Health to help them implement a creative approach to preventing disease and promoting wellness in Linn County. Linn County is one of 18 Iowa communities that received a grant award.

Project coordinator and Linn County Board of Health member Stephanie Neff says the goal of the Healthy Living in Linn initiative is to create a culture of wellness in the community by increasing access to healthier foods, providing tools to build skills for healthier decisions and recognizing successful efforts to improve health and prevent chronic disease in children and families.

"The Harkin wellness funding provides a unique opportunity for partnership between the Linn County Board of Health and the Healthy Living Coalition," said Neff. "Building effective community partnerships with all sectors including business, faith, education, health care and elected officials will be critical to improving the health of our community over time. We know that people want to make healthier choices and live healthier lives, so that's what we're here to help them accomplish."

The project began this month and will continue until July 2010. Local partners in the project include members of the Healthy Living Coalition.

"Prevention and health promotion today are the keys to reducing health care costs tomorrow and for helping Iowans live a longer, happier life," said U.S. Senator Tom Harkin, who helped secure the federal portion of the new funding. "I congratulate the Linn County Board of Health and I look forward to learning how this project improves the health of this community."

For more information about the project or to get involved, contact Stephanie Neff at (319) 369-8600 or LoesSL@crstlukes.com.

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