University Federal Credit Union (UFCU) has presented a generous donation of $10,000 to The University of Texas Elementary School’s Healthy Families Initiative (HFI) on Monday, May 23, at 10 a.m. in the school gardens.
Rhonda Summerbell, senior manager of University Relations, said, “UFCU has seen the benefits of the Healthy Families Initiative on students and their families over the years. We are proud to support this model program, and to extend its message by making our own summer wellness program available to students.”
The program, which includes an eight-week activity booklet focusing on physical fitness and nutrition, will kick-off on June 11 with UFCU’s Youth FitFest Day at participating UFCU branches. Students who complete the summer program can participate in a culminating event at UFCU Disch-Falk Field that will include prizes.
UFCU, a longtime supporter of UT Elementary School, chose to give to the Healthy Families Initiative due to the current national concern on childhood obesity rates and the initiative’s proven track record. HFI is credited with reducing the prevalence of overweight and obese students at the school. It offers students a coordinated approach to building and implementing healthy habits into the student’s daily activities. For instance, students engage with a physical education instructor several days a week and are encouraged to participate in several school-wide annual events. The school also hosts several after-school programs, including WellNest, which promotes physical and nutritional wellness.
Robert Knipe, the school’s physical education teacher, is glad that HFI continues to receive such wonderful support from the community.
“Anyone who sees our students’ excitement about eating a vegetable salad that they personally helped grow in the school gardens or sees our kids training for a big event like our annual 5k run, can’t help but get excited along with them,” said Knipe. “It becomes very apparent that these lessons are making deep impressions in how our students are going to live the rest of the lives.”
UT Elementary School, located at 2201 E. 6th Street, is operated by the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin. It serves 260 pre-kindergarten to fifth-grade students in East Austin. For more information about UT Elementary School and its Healthy Families Initiative, visit www.utelementary.org.
With more than $1.3 billion in assets, UFCU is Austin’s largest locally-owned financial institution and serves over 150,000 members in the Austin and Galveston areas. For more information on UFCU’s products and services, visit www.ufcu.org.