It’s Time to Turn Ideas into Action: Working Together to HEAL Appalachia


It is estimated that by 2020, 50% of the U.S. population will be obese. Every day, we learn more about the devastating impact that being overweight has on our long-term health and quality of life.

If you, your school, church or community group has an idea to address this problem at the local level, now is the time to act. Applications are now open for the 2012 HEAL Appalachia Mini-Grants Program, aimed at supporting grassroots efforts to reduce obesity in our community.

Since 2010, Mountain States Health Alliance, in partnership with East Tennessee State University’s Obesity Collaborative, have enabled 50 community groups to implement innovative programs aimed at reducing childhood obesity in our region through the HEAL Appalachia program. HEAL (an acronym for “healthy eating, active living”) Appalachia focuses on supporting the mobilization of community organizations to combat childhood obesity where we worship, heal, learn and work across 20 counties in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia.

Community groups, schools, churches, health care providers and workplaces are each eligible to apply for one of 15 $2,000 grants or one of four $5,000 grants that will be awarded at a free public symposium at the Meadowview Conference Center in Kingsport, Tenn., on April 12. Over the past two years, HEAL Appalachia has awarded $100,000 to community groups to facilitate a range of initiatives from the growing of produce gardens to expansion of educational outreach and provision of increased physical activity throughout the region.

To learn more about HEAL Appalachia and how to apply for the 2012 grants, go to The deadline for applications is March 1, 2012.

For more information, contact Allison Rogers, Corporate Director – Strategic Planning, MSHA, at or 423-302-3378.

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