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Propel Schools Receives Live Well Allegheny School Designation

December 16, 2016

PITTSBURGH – The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) today announced Propel Schools, a not for profit organization, as the newest Live Well Allegheny School. Dr. Tina Chekan, Superintendent/CEO at Propel Schools, accepted the designation for all eleven schools and two additional set to open in the Fall of 2017 in Allegheny County.

“We are excited to see so many schools and organizations taking on the challenge to help us become the healthiest county by being designated as part of the Live Well Allegheny campaign and then taking that message to their students, residents, members, partners and more,” said County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. “It is only through such thoughtful, collaborative efforts that we can make real progress. We’re excited to have Propel Schools on board and look forward to seeing their students, faculty and staff becoming healthier with all of us.”

Propel Schools hosted a school assembly with Sterlen Barr at Propel Homestead called “Fun, Food and Fitness” about the importance of making healthy lifestyle choices. This program teaches kids the importance of healthy food and fitness in a fun and engaging way.

“Schools can play a significant role in promoting health for their students, whether it is enhancing healthy food options, increasing opportunities for physical activity or providing education on a variety of health behaviors” said Dr. Karen Hacker, Director of the Allegheny County Health Department. “I commend Propel Schools for addressing all of these areas and joining the Live Well Allegheny campaign. They are finding fun and interactive ways to promote health in their schools.”

To be designated as a Live Well Allegheny School, Propel Schools has committed to the following action steps to support the health and wellness of its students and employees:

  • Increased physical education to include 7 physical activities.
  • Preferred meals meet USDA’s Healthier US Schools Challenge Silver level for nutritional requirements.
  • Preferred meals never contain aspartame, saccharin, bleached or bromated flour.
  • Every Preferred Meals is free from certain artificial colors and flavors, MSG, bromated vegetable oils, high fructose and corn syrup.100% of all grain produce are whole grain.
  • Milk provided by Preferred Meal is rBST hormone-free.
  • Plant and harvest from their own garden in one location (Homestead).
  • Wellness program for students including dating violence, grief awareness and general teen wellness.

Superintendent/CEO, Dr. Tina Chekan, is spearheading the effort, with plans to emphasize the importance of the family dinner, nutrition and exercise to all constituencies. “Experiencing wellness is necessary for our students to be able to learn and grow academically.  As Propel focuses on redefining school and defying expectations, we want our students and their families to know more about how to fuel learning through healthy eating and active lifestyles.”

Students and employees in the Live Well Allegheny campaign work with Health Department’s staff. While monetary resources are not part of the initiative, participating workplaces can receive materials, information and collateral items to promote the campaign and their individual efforts to live well.

Live Well Allegheny was launched in January 2014 as a comprehensive, innovative strategy on wellness that embraces a broad concept of living well to include physical health, mental wellness, personal and community safety, prevention and preparedness, and much more. The effort is being led by the Board of Health and Health Department Director Dr. Karen Hacker.

Eat’n Park, Hello Bistro Designated as Newest Live Well Allegheny Restaurants

December 5, 2016

The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) today announced Eat’n Park Restaurants and Hello Bistro, subsidiary establishments under the parent company Eat’n Park Hospitality Group, are the newest Live Well Allegheny Restaurants. Jeff Broadhurst, President and CEO at Eat’n Park Hospitality Group, Inc., accepted the designation for both establishments at Eat’n Park Hospitality Group’s corporate office in Homestead, PA.

eatnpark_smileycookies“Eat’n Park has been a part of our region since 1949. Having its leadership, both with the Eat’n Park restaurants and Hello Bistro, commit to being part of the Live Well Allegheny campaign is a significant step,” said County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. “We are grateful to have so many corporate, municipal, school and other partners join us in working towards making Allegheny County a healthier county.”

Participants in the Live Well Allegheny campaign work with Health Department’s staff. While monetary resources are not part of the initiative, participating restaurants can receive materials, information and collateral items to promote the campaign and their individual efforts to live well.

“I am pleased to recognize the steps taken by Eat’n Park Hospitality Group to offer healthy options to their customers,” said Dr. Karen Hacker, Director of the Allegheny County Health Department. “This commitment greatly expands the reach of Live Well Allegheny Restaurants to many Allegheny County communities and residents.”

To achieve Live Well Allegheny status, restaurants must commit to eliminating trans-fat oils, be smoke free, not sell tobacco products, and commit to additional action steps. Eat’n Park Restaurants and Hello Bistro have met these criteria and also provide the following:

Eat’n Park:

  • low calorie menu items and side dishes designated as Eat’n Smart, as well as low-calorie dressing options.
  • half or smaller portions on select entrees.
  • vegetarian options on their Soup, Salad and Fruit Bar and a vegetarian hamburger option.
  • bike racks when possible.

Hello Bistro:

  • vegetarian/vegan options through their Build Your Own Salad and a vegetarian hamburger alternative.
  • Low-calorie dressing options for all salads.
  • Options for low-calorie entrees or sides across menu categories.

“Health and wellness has always been an important part of our culture at Eat’n Park Hospitality Group,” said Jeff Broadhurst, President and CEO of Eat’n Park Hospitality Group. “We’re proud to do what we can to help make Allegheny County a healthier region.”

Live Well Allegheny was launched in January 2014 as a comprehensive, innovative strategy on wellness that embraces a broad concept of living well to include physical health, mental wellness, personal and community safety, prevention and preparedness, and much more. The effort is being led by the Board of Health and Health Department Director Dr. Karen Hacker.

Woodland Hills and Five Communities Become Part of Live Well Allegheny

August 20, 2016

Live_Well_Woodland-Hills-SchoolsPITTSBURGH –Woodland Hills School District along with the Boroughs of East Pittsburgh, Edgewood, North Braddock, Rankin and Swissvale were designated as part of the Live Well Allegheny campaign at this morning’s Back-to-School event. With these additions, there are now seven Live Well Allegheny Schools and 31 Live Well Allegheny Communities.

“Congratulations to these communities for banding together and making this commitment to the Live Well Allegheny campaign,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald. “It sends a strong message to our residents when a district and all of its communities are working cooperatively to make our residents healthier.”

The Woodland Hills School District hosted the annual Back-to-School event at the Woodland Hills Jr./Sr. High School Campus. In addition to the Live Well Allegheny launch the event included a band concert, informational tables for students and their families, including health and wellness information, and food and drink.

“We are excited to see the communities of the Mon Valley join our Live Well Allegheny campaign,” said Dr. Karen Hacker, Director of the Allegheny County Health Department. “Surrounding our residents with opportunities to live well is our goal. We applaud the communities, schools and workplaces that are stepping up and expanding their efforts to improve the health of the county.”

Woodland Hills School District has begun several healthy living initiatives including: participation in the PA Department of Agriculture fresh fruit and vegetables program, Yoga in Schools as well as the Open Airways smoking prevention and cessation program. They were one of the first schools selected to be a part of an asthma program that is a partnership with Allegheny General Hospital, PA Lung Association and Duquesne University. The district provides health and wellness information annually at the Back-to-School event, which attracts 500 residents. The district has also participated in the PA Youth Survey (PAYS) and has a fully operational data sharing agreement with the Allegheny County Department of Human Services.

The Borough of East Pittsburgh pledges to share wellness information with community members, encourage involvement with volunteer activities, promote smoke-free buildings and perimeters and to utilize social media and web sites to provide health and wellness information.

The Borough of Edgewood has committed to promoting youth and adult sport leagues, promoting farmer’s markets and encouraging multi-modal transportation in their community.

The Borough of North Braddock will promote participation in a voluntary wellness campaign for community employees, share information on wellness campaign events encouraging residents to participate and provide health information focused on monthly or seasonal events.

Rankin Borough will encourage multi-modal transportation, promote smoke-free buildings and also provide health information at events.

The Borough of Swissvale has pledged to promote the Swissvale Farmer’s Market, promote and support events like the Swissvale Mile, encourage involvement with volunteer activities and to utilize the borough’s web site to share health and wellness information.

These communities join Braddock Hills, Chalfant, Forest Hills, Turtle Creek and Wilkins Township, also from the Woodland Hills School District, which have already received the Live Well Allegheny designation.

Live Well Allegheny was launched by the County Executive in January 2014 as a comprehensive, innovative strategy on wellness that embraces a broad concept of living well to include physical health, mental wellness, personal and community safety, prevention and preparedness, and much more. The effort is being led by the Board of Health and Dr. Karen Hacker.