Wilmington City Council Member Hanifa Shabazz Joins First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House to Celebrate Wilmington's Achievements in Let's Move! Cities, Towns and Counties

Posted on  07/10/2013 10:12 am

Wilmington City Council Member Hanifa Shabazz (D-4th District) will join First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House today (Wednesday, July 10) to celebrate the outstanding efforts of Wilmington and other communities to complete health and wellness goals over the past year for Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties (LMCTC).

LMCTC, which is supported in Delaware and nationally by the National League of Cities, calls upon local elected officials to adopt sustainable and holistic strategies that improve access to healthy, affordable food and opportunities for physical activity.

Since joining LMCTC, Wilmington’s Let’s Move! efforts have resulted in six medals being awarded to the City for improving access to healthy, affordable food and increasing opportunities for physical activity. Specifically, through collaboration between the Wilmington Youth Leadership Commission and organizations such as Nemours Health Services, Duffy’s Hope and Widener University’s Over Powering Adversity (OPA) student organization, Wilmington has made great progress in identifying ways the City could add more physical activity programs in parks and open spaces for children of all ages.

“We are delivering a very important message in Wilmington to children and their families about healthy eating and healthy choices for physical activity,” said Council Member Shabazz. “Our task now is to make sure that these new food and physical activity behaviors we are encouraging children to adopt become an important and consistent part of their lives.”

“The League of Cities appreciates the support and energy of the First Lady for her tireless efforts to reduce the obesity epidemic facing our communities,” said National League of Cities’ Executive Director, Clarence Anthony. “We congratulate all the local elected officials who participated in the event and played an instrumental role in providing our nation’s children with a healthier future. When children grow up in cities, towns and counties that promote healthy development, they become productive and healthy adults, contributing to the prosperity of our communities.”

LMCTC is a major component of First Lady Michelle Obama’s comprehensive Let’s Move! Initiative, which is dedicated to solving the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation. A total of 330 cities, towns and counties from 46 states and the District of Columbia, which collectively represent more than 56 million Americans, have committed to the initiative’s five goals. NLC has awarded more than 1,000 bronze, silver and gold “medals” to recognize local elected officials who have made progress in achieving these goals.

As part of LMCTC, local elected officials are working towards the following goals:

  • Goal I: Start Early, Start Smart: Promoting best practices for nutrition, physical activity, and screen time in early care and education settings
  • Goal II: My Plate, Your Place: Prominently displaying MyPlate in all municipal or county venues where food is served
  • Goal III: Smart Servings for Students: Increasing participation in school breakfast and lunch programs
  • Goal IV: Model Food Service: Implementing healthy and sustainable food service guidelines that are aligned with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans
  • Goal V: Active Kids at Play: Increasing opportunities for physical activity

NLC is working in partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and with the support of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the National Association of Counties and other nonprofit organizations, to assist local elected officials who join LMCTC as they implement policy and environmental changes to prevent childhood obesity. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded NLC a grant to provide technical assistance to local elected officials working to create healthier communities and prevent childhood obesity, including sites participating in LMCTC.

For more information about LMCTC, visit www.HealthyCommunitiesHealthyFuture.org.

The National League of Cities is dedicated to helping city leaders build better communities. NLC is a resource and advocate for 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million Americans.