Florida
Blue
Foundation

Launched:
2008

Public Partners:
The Florida Department of Health in Duval County

 
 

Florida Blue Foundation

The foundation, which is the philanthropic affiliate of Florida Blue, is committed to helping people and communities achieve better health.http://www.bcbsfl.com

Embrace a Healthy Florida

To address the causes and prevention of childhood obesity, the Florida Blue Foundation launched Embrace a Healthy Florida in 2008. Embrace is a statewide, Florida-­based, multisector community initiative that goes beyond traditional nutrition and fitness programs. Grounded in evidence-­based research, the initiative defined target areas, desired outcomes, and the processes for reaching and measuring quantifiable results.

After a series of meetings with public, private, and community sectors in several communities across Florida, six targeted communities were identified. In these communities, community leaders combating childhood obesity united a wide variety of stakeholders to identify community needs and create a community Call to Action Plan with specific recommendations for addressing the barriers to healthy eating and an active lifestyle.

In Duval County, the partnership between the Florida Blue Foundation and the Florida Department of Health in Duval County was then launched in 2008. The foundation recognized the ongoing efforts of the Department of Health and its Healthy Jacksonville Childhood Obesity Prevention Coalition and presented funding to strengthen the coalition, conduct a community assessment, develop the Call to Action Plan, and continue the coalition’s work. The foundation provided additional funding for community minigrants to engage on-­the-­ground community change leaders and address the action steps in the Call to Action Plan. The Department of Health manages the process, beginning with requests for proposals, review of proposals, funding recommendations to the foundation, and collecting and reporting outcomes.

Since 2009, the foundation has awarded more than $1.3 million to nonprofit and government entities in Duval County to combat childhood obesity. More than 70 such entities received grants through the foundation’s Embrace initiative and partnered with Healthy Jacksonville to work toward reducing and preventing childhood obesity in Duval County.

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