Project EverGreen, STMA initiative combats childhood obesity

September 24, 2014  - By

Project EverGreen launched its “Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids.” initiative to work against childhood obesity, a collaboration with the Sports Turf Managers Association (STMA) and the Turfgrass Water Conservation Alliance.

The initiative was created to restore and revitalize green spaces such as sports fields and parks for kids to play, exercise and connect.

Childhood obesity has doubled and adolescence obesity has quadrupled in the past 30 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These statistics are due, in part, to a lack of physical activity that stems from the lack of recreational green spaces on which to play and exercise, according to Project EverGreen.

“This initiative underscores the core objectives Project EverGreen stands for which is to develop green spaces to help communities thrive,” Executive Director Cindy Code says. “Our goal is to ensure children have access to green space to play and exercise.”

Project EverGreen is kicking off the initiative in its hometown of Cleveland, with the revitalization of the soccer field behind the Michael J. Zone Recreation Center.

The project involves aerating, fertilizing and overseeding the playing surface as well as removing rocks and bricks embedded in the soil. Local contractors, led by Weed Man, will oversee the renovation work that is scheduled for completion in early October.

“Safe and healthy playing surfaces are vital for our kids’ enjoyment and development,” Code said. “Understanding the value and benefits of green spaces to our communities from an early age is crucial to the long-term sustainability of outdoor spaces.”

Additional “Healthy Turf. Healthy Kids.” projects will commence in select cities across the U.S. in 2015.

AT Staff

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