Wellmark Foundation grant
funds health and fitness efforts for South Dakota Girl Scouts
Grant, chosen from 150 requests, will foster health, leadership
skills in young women
January 24, 2011
(Des Moines, Iowa) – Girl Scouts –
Dakota Horizons has received a one-year, $20,000 grant from
The Wellmark Foundation to develop a childhood obesity prevention
program targeting health and fitness for girls.
The Wellmark Foundation is a non-profit foundation that seeks
to improve the health of Iowans, South Dakotans, and their
communities. The Foundation provides support to non-profit
and public entities to help local communities establish or
expand health initiatives. Through its 2010 Healthy Communities
Grant Program, the Foundation received nearly 150 grant requests.
This grant award to Girl Scouts – Dakota Horizons represents
one of the 17 grants competitively awarded to support projects
throughout Iowa and South Dakota. Cumulatively, The Wellmark
Foundation is proud to award $1,334,817 to these 17 grants
to serve as catalyst funding for local health projects.
“The Wellmark Foundation is proud to select the Health
and Fitness Challenge,” says Matt McGarvey, the Foundation’s
director. “This innovative program empowers young people
throughout South Dakota to both develop leadership skills
and improve their health.”
The Health and Fitness Challenge will help improve the health
of 250 participating Girl Scouts and their families across
South Dakota. Participating girls will learn ways to improve
their health and prevent childhood obesity, and to access
health and fitness resources in their community. In addition,
the project will offer girls and their families the tools
needed to make realistic changes to set individual and family
goals for a healthy lifestyle.
The project has two key components. The first piece is establishment
of a seven-member Health and Fitness Youth Task Force comprised
of middle school and high school girls. The task force will
give girls a voice in the decision-making process of establishing
health and fitness activities for the Girl Scout community
in South Dakota.
The project will also feature Health and Fitness Challenge
events held in conjunction with the council’s camp in
seven locations across the state. Challenge sites will be
established in Sioux Falls, Rapid City, Aberdeen, Huron, Yankton,
Pine Ridge and Rosebud. At risk, underserved girls and their
families will be targeted to participate in Challenge events,
which will bring Girl Scouts and their families together to
participate in hands-on learning activities focusing on nutrition,
wellness and physical fitness.
The project will be implemented with the support of numerous
community collaborators. Learning materials, activities and
project results will be shared on the Girl Scouts - Dakota
Horizon’s website and through social media to Girl Scout
members and their families so the project may be replicated
across the state.
About Girl Scouts – Dakota Horizons
Girl Scouts—Dakota Horizons is a non-profit organization
chartered by Girl Scouts of the USA, the largest girl leadership
organization in the world. Girl Scouting is meant for every
girl, everywhere to experience. The Dakota Horizons' council
covers more than 164,000 squares miles and has more than 1,666
Girl Scout troops. 12,340 girls, 2,418 leaders and 1,997 adult
and lifetime members make up Girl Scouts—Dakota Horizons.
Girl Scout programs are offered on 13 Indian Reservations,
3 Air Force Bases and cover 134 counties across Dakota Horizons.
For more information on Girl Scouts – Dakota Horizons,
contact Bette Poppen, (605) 854-3117 / firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information regarding the Wellmark Foundation and
its grant programs, visit www.wellmark.com/foundation.