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Press Release


Media Contact: Scott Golden
(804) 354-5252,
scott.golden@anthem.com


Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation Awards Seven New Grants to Boys & Girls Clubs in Virginia

Continues support for Triple Play wellness program

RICHMOND, Va – June 6, 2013 – Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation today announced seven new grants to local Boys & Girls Clubs to improve the health and wellness of kids in Virginia through the Triple Play wellness program.

Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Virginia and Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond will each receive a $10,000 Start-Up grant to implement Triple Play programming at their location for the first time. Additionally, Boys & Girls Club of Bristol and Boys & Girls Clubs of the Danville Area will each receive a $5,000 Healthy Habits grant to provide programming focused on teaching the importance of healthy eating habits and being physically active. Boys & Girls Club of Harrisonburg, Boys & Girls Club of the Mountain Empire (Bristol) and Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Virginia will each receive a $1,500 Leadership grant to encourage youth leadership around healthy lifestyles issues.

“Many kids today are facing an uphill battle when it comes to eating right and understanding how to maintain healthy habits,” said Jay Schukman, M.D., chief medical director, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield. “The Triple Play program and Boys & Girls Clubs are working to educate and help make healthy choices easier for kids. Through the program we are building a solid foundation of learning with activities that will help kids continue healthy habits and exercise into their adult lives.”

Triple Play: A Game Plan for the Mind, Body and Soul, is Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s proven health and wellness program. Supported by founding sponsor Coca-Cola and co-sponsor, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation, the program’s three components encourage Club members to eat healthier (mind), become more physically active (body) and increase their ability to engage in healthy relationships (soul).

A study of more than 2,000 children ages 9-14 who attend Boys & Girls Clubs showed that Triple Play succeeded in getting them to exercise more, eat healthier foods and feel better about themselves. Triple Play kids increased to 90 percent of the federally recommended amount of daily exercise, which is 60 minutes a day for children, while their peers outside the program decreased to 78 percent.

“Triple Play has rapidly become one of the most popular programs offered at Boys & Girls Clubs across the country because its fun for kids and it works,” said Wayne B. Moss, BGCA’s senior director of Sports, Fitness and Recreation. “We’re very excited to continue our partnership with Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation as a co-sponsor of the program and thank them for their support to bring healthy programs and education to additional youth across the country. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation is committed to building a healthier future for kids and this funding will create an immediate impact on our Club members and their families.”

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation is committed to improving health and strengthening Virginia communities. Through its Healthy Generations grant program, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation works to identify the issues most in need of attention and then directs its financial support and volunteer efforts toward improving health in those areas. Promoting youth health and active lifestyles is an ongoing focus of the foundation.

The Start-Up, Healthy Habits and Leadership grants announced today are part of a three-year, $5 million commitment from Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s parent company foundation to Boys & Girls Clubs of America to promote healthy lifestyles. Last year, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation provided seven Triple Play startup, Healthy Habits and Leadership grants to Clubs in Virginia: Boys & Girls Club of the Mountain Empire (Bristol), Boys & Girls Club of Harrisonburg, Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Virginia, Boys & Girls Club of Southwest Virginia, Boys & Girls Club of Northern Shenandoah Valley, Southside Boys & Girls Club, and Boys & Girls Club of Bristol. This is the third consecutive year Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation has awarded Triple Play grants in Virginia.

About Triple Play
Triple Play, a healthy lifestyles game plan for the mind, body and soul, was launched in 2005 by Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services with support from The Coca-Cola Company. The goal of Triple Play is to encourage kids to eat healthier, become more physically active and increase their ability to engage in healthy relationships. A two-year study of more than 2,000 children ages 9-14 showed that Triple Play succeeded in getting them to exercise more, eat healthier foods and feel better about themselves. The study found that Triple Play kids increased to 90 percent of the federally recommended amount of daily exercise, which is 60 minutes a day for children, while their peers outside the program decreased to 78 percent. Triple Play includes five program components, each of which serves between 20,000 and 500,000 youth annually. Since its inception in 2005, Triple Play has made more than 6 million connections with kids across the country. In 2011,  the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield’s corporate foundation joined BGCA and Coca-Cola as a Triple Play sponsor. Learn more about the program at www.bgca.org/tripleplay.

About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
For more than 100 years, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (GreatFutures.org) has enabled young people most in need to achieve great futures as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Today, more than 4,000 Clubs serve some 4 million young people annually through Club membership and community outreach. Clubs are located in cities, towns, public housing and on Native American lands throughout the country, and serve military families in BGCA-affiliated Youth Centers on U.S. military installations worldwide. They provide a safe place, caring adult mentors, fun, friendship, and high-impact youth development programs on a daily basis during critical non-school hours. Priority programs emphasize academic success, good character and citizenship, and healthy lifestyles. In a Harris Survey of alumni, 57 percent said the Club saved their lives. National headquarters are located in Atlanta. Learn more at http://www.bgca.org/facebook and http://bgca.org/twitter.

About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation
Through charitable grant making, the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation LLC, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, promotes Anthem’s inherent commitment to enhance the health and well-being of individuals and families in communities that Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield serves. The Foundation focuses its funding on strategic initiatives that address and provide innovative solutions to health care challenges, as well as promoting the Healthy Generations Program, a multi-generational initiative that targets specific disease states and medical conditions. These include: prenatal care in the first trimester, low birth weight babies, cardiac morbidity rates, long term activities that decrease obesity and increase physical activity, diabetes prevalence in adult populations, adult pneumococcal and influenza vaccinations and smoking cessation. The Foundation also coordinates the company’s annual associate giving campaign and its parent foundation provides a 50 percent match of associates’ campaign pledges. ®ANTHEM is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

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