Vincennes Walmart Awards Good Samaritan With $1,000 Community Grant

Good Samaritan recently received a $1,000 Community Grant from the Walmart Community Grants Team in Vincennes in
support of their wellness initiatives for children throughout the community.

Childhood obesity is on the rise worldwide, and is a serious problem in the United States and a growing epidemic in Knox County. Prevention and healthy lifestyle choices are key in combating the problem. These growing health risks are why Good Samaritan’s Community Health Department created the “Fit Kids” program in 2006.

“The Community Health Outreach of Good Samaritan is very thankful for the generosity and kindness of our local Vincennes Walmart store. This gift makes it apparent that Walmart cares about its communities’ well-being, and in this case, the children,” stated Debra Hardwick, Patient Care Coordinator/Health Coach in Integrated Health Delivery. “Good Samaritan looks forward to continuing to partner with our local Walmart in endeavors that improve our communities’ well-being and health. Once again, we say ‘Thank You.’”

Fit Kids is an interactive program that teaches children about fats and sugars in food as well as promoting healthy lifestyle choices. Nurses go to all the local schools in Knox County to teach childhood obesity classes to third, fifth, seventh and ninth grade students. Last year in 2015, 4,824 students benefited from the program. Total operating expenses of the program in 2015 added up to be around $9,000 and the amount grows each year. The Walmart Community Grant will support the mission of Community Health’s Fit Kids program and help purchase educational materials for the children.

Since its creation in 2006, the Fit Kids program has seen approximately 15,000 students. The interactive, hands-on sessions use visual aids and learning tools specific to each activity. Third graders learn about sugar in food and drinks and get the chance to measure the amount of sugar they consume each week. Fifth grade students learn about portion size and fat, while seventh graders learn to read food labels and understand the importance of daily physical activity. Ninth grade students are taught about unhealthy eating habits and how they can lead to chronic diseases. Games, prizes and educational handouts are provided in each session of the program.

The importance of the program cannot be understated, as healthy, knowledgeable children can lead to healthier adults. The goal of Fit Kids is to provide useful education to children with the hope of preventing chronic diseases, such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes, and increase healthy lifestyles.

“Our Community Health department works hard every day to improve the community Good Samaritan is a part of,” stated Rob McLin, President and CEO. “We enjoy partnering with other local organizations and businesses and are truly grateful for the support we received from the Vincennes Walmart.”

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