Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation Awards $487,000 in Grants to Improve Youth Fitness

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The Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation has awarded $487,000 to seven nonprofit organizations using innovative ideas to increase time Georgia youth spend in physical activity and to increase consumption of fruits and vegetables.

The grants are part of AFYF’s initiative to reduce childhood obesity in Georgia. AFYF partners with Georgia Shape and other organizations to touch more than 1 million children annually. State and federal research confirms that Georgia has halted the decades long trend of rising childhood obesity rates, and the latest tracking shows fewer children are obese. Improves have been greatest among Georgia’s preschool-age children.

The new investments include a $40,000 to Carver Neighborhood Market, a nonprofit neighborhood grocery in South Atlanta that offers offer 2-for-1 produce specials to low-income shoppers and cooking classes. A leader in Atlanta’s Food Oasis campaign, the market saw dramatic increases in sales of fresh fruits and vegetables in its first year of operation.

“We are excited to team up with Carver Neighborhood Market and other groups bringing innovative food solutions and physical activity programs to families with the greatest needs,” said Debbie Slingerland, an Atlanta Falcons associate and part of the staff team that reviews and awards grants. “These creative approaches help families achieve results that go beyond what seems possible today.”

Three additional grants support Food Oasis innovations:

  • $80,000 matching grant to Georgia Family Connection Partnership to identify and expand community-based programs that increase fruits and vegetable consumption among low-income parents with young children.
  • $42,000 to Wholesome Wave Georgia to offer the Double Value Coupon Program at 11 Atlanta farmer’s markets, including four MARTA markets.
  • $50,000 to Georgia Organics to train nonprofit leaders on “nudge” marketing innovations and to provide micro-grants to accelerate adoption of the marketing innovations.

The AFYF grants include awards to three organizations increasing time youth spend in physical activity:

  • $150,000 to Good Sports to donate at least 300,000 worth of sports and fitness equipment across Georgia, removing barriers to participation for 15,000 children.
  • $85,000 to Kids and Pros to lead more than 20 camps, clinics and presentations across Georgia to promote physical activity, safety and character development through tackle and flag football.
  • $40,000 to Georgia Foundation for Public Health to expand the Georgia Shape Power Up for 30 initiative to after-school sites that increase aerobic fitness for middle school-age girls across Georgia.