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Avondale's Commitment
Spotlight
LetsMoveAvondale.JPG
Let's Move! Avondale logo with photo of council cheering t-ball players
July 18, 2012: Avondale Mayor Marie Lopez Rogers joined mayors from around the country at an event held this morning in Philadelphia to announce a new National League of Cities (NLC) project that will help local elected officials reduce childhood obesity in their communities. Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties (LMCTC) is a key component of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative, which is dedicated to reversing the childhood obesity epidemic within a generation.

Mayor Rogers, who also serves as NLC’s Vice President, commended the First Lady for her passionate efforts in raising awareness of the problem o
f childhood obesity and taking steps to fight it through Let’s Move!

Kids at Hope City
“Avondale is a Kids At Hope City where we believe all kids can succeed, no exceptions! Let’s Move! works because it involves the entire community working together to keep children physically active and healthy. In Avondale, we are already taking many of the steps to ensure that our next generation of adults is on the right path to a healthy and successful life,” said Mayor Rogers.

Avondale’s City Council is committed to ensuring that the city’s families have the resources to keep kids healthy through a myriad of youth sports and recreation activities, early childhood and family services programs. In 2011, Avondale, through a public private partnership, opened the Randall McDaniel Sports Complex, an 80,000 square foot indoor basketball, soccer and volleyball sports facility, to encourage physical activity among youth. The city also partnered with Arizona Community Farmers Markets to host Saturday morning farmers markets at Avondale Friendship Park where residents have access to fresh, locally grown produce. Additionally, the city's Civic Center campus is the site of a community garden, run by the non-profit group The Garden Patch, where residents can lease small plots of land to grow and harvest their own fruits and vegetables. Avondale has long promoted walking and cycling through its participation in programs such as Safe Routes to School/Walk to School Day, and its commitment to building walking trails, bike lanes and open space amenities all across the city. The Mayor’s monthly City Hall Comes to You initiative has also focused on healthy eating, with nutrition demonstrations at a local Food City grocery store, and “Come and Play” events for young children and parents at the Avondale Library.


Avondale also partners with its six school districts, the Boys & Girls Club, and a host of other groups to keep the city on the move. Avondale's Neighborhood and Family Services and Parks, Recreation & Libraries departments started an after-school program with the Boys and Girls Club and schools in the city's historic core, offering weekly programs on everything from art and music lessons to physical activity. The program, known as I-Sync, has benefitted the area which had previously experienced problems among youth who had nowhere to go on "early release Wednesdays." Avondale has long been committed to creating a healthy community. Let's Move! complements initiatives such as Kids At Hope because it lays the foundation for helping Avondale's children experience success.



Let's Move! Cities, Towns and Counties
LMCTC calls upon local elected officials to adopt long-term, sustainable, and holistic approaches that promote improved nutrition and increased physical activity in their communities. Local elected officials can sign up and learn more about this NLC initiative to support Let's Move! Cities, Towns and Counties at www.healthycommunitieshealthyfuture.org.
NLC is leading this initiative in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and nonprofit organizations and in coordination with the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the National Association of Counties to assist local elected officials in implementing policy and environmental changes to prevent childhood obesity.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2012/07/18/helping-local-officials-achieve-healthier-communities-lets-move-cities-towns-and-cou

http://www.letsmove.gov/blog/2012/07/18/today-first-lady-michelle-obama-makes-let%E2%80%99s-move-cities-towns-and-counties-announcem