UnitedHealthcare and Girls on the Run of Northern Virginia Team Up to Promote Health and Well-Being Among Young Girls
FAIRFAX, Va. (March 30, 2011) - UnitedHealthcare will be the presenting sponsor of two 5K races this year hosted by Girls on the Run of Northern Virginia (GOTR NOVA), a nonprofit that promotes positive self image, healthy behaviors and well-being among young girls.
The two races - in May and December - will both be the culmination of a 10-week program for girls in grades 3 through 8 designed to empower them with life-long skills to improve their emotional and physical health in part by training to either walk or run in a 5K race. The program's goal also is to help fight childhood obesity. According to the 2007 National Survey of Children's Health, the latest data available, 31 percent of Virginia's youths aged 10 to 17 were overweight or obese.
The first race - New Balance Girls on the Run 5K Presented by UnitedHealthcare - will be held May 15 at George Mason University's Fairfax campus. The second race - the Girls on the Run Reindeer Romp Presented by UnitedHealthcare (location TBD) - will be held Dec. 3. The public is encouraged to come and cheer thousands of girls who are expected to participate. For more information about the races, go to http://www.gotrnova.org/5k/new-balance-gotr-5k.
"Girls on the Run's programs and services exemplify the type of work that is necessary to help fight childhood obesity and promote the overall health and well-being of young girls and their families," said Jim Cronin, Mid-Atlantic region CEO, UnitedHealthcare Employer & Individual. "With the support of local organizations such as Girls on the Run, we can work together to fight childhood obesity one run, walk, jump and healthy meal at a time."
"UnitedHealthcare's support will certainly enable GOTR NOVA to not only extend its reach to even more families in Northern Virginia, but also to ensure we deliver celebration 5K events that are worthy of all that the girls have accomplished during the 10-week program," said Catherine Keightley, executive director, GOTR NOVA. "We look forward to an enduring partnership that truly benefits the families of Northern Virginia."
GOTR NOVA operates more than 200 programs in schools all across Northern Virginia, reaching about 4,000 girls in each of the Spring and Fall sessions for a total of nearly 8,000 girls each year. The 10-week programs include twice-weekly lessons led by female coaches, who help the girls train for the 5K walk/run, and also mentor the girls as they discuss important issues such as building positive self-esteem and adopting healthy lifestyles.
About Girls on the Run of Northern Virginia
Established in 2001, GOTR NOVA began its after school program with 27 girls. Through interactive activities such as running, playing games, and discussing important issues, the girls learn how to celebrate being girls and to honor their own voices. Led by trained female coaches who guide and mentor the girls through a curriculum-based program, the girls are empowered with greater self-awareness, a sense of achievement, and a foundation in team building to help them become strong, contented, and self-confident young women. During the program, the girls train together to run a celebratory 5K.
Currently, GOTR NOVA serves nearly 4,000 girls at 170 sites in Northern Virginia. GOTR NOVA is an Independent Council of Girls on the Run International, which has a network of over 150 chapters across the United States and Canada serving tens of thousands of girls. For more information on Girls on the Run of Northern Virginia visit www.gotrnova.org.
UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives by simplifying the health care experience, meeting consumer health and wellness needs, and sustaining trusted relationships with care providers. The company offers the full spectrum of health benefit programs for individuals, employers, and Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, and contracts directly with more than 650,000 physicians and care professionals and 5,000 hospitals nationwide. UnitedHealthcare serves more than 37 million people and is one of the businesses of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH), a diversified Fortune 50 health and well-being company.