The National League of Cities (NLC) recognized Aurora’s Mayor Steve Hogan for the recent completion of key health and wellness goals for Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties (LMCTC). LMCTC is a major component of First Lady Michelle Obama’s comprehensive Let’s Move! initiative to ensure that kids can grow up healthy. LMCTC works closely with local elected officials nationwide to adopt policies that improve access to healthy affordable food and opportunities for physical activity for their constituents across five goal areas.
“Thanks to your dedication to the health and wellness of your community, Aurora is part of a nationwide movement that supports health in cities, towns and counties across the United States,” said National League of Cities President Melodee Colbert-Kean, councilmember and former mayor, Joplin, Mo. “By improving access to healthy foods and creating opportunities for physical fitness, you are helping to create a healthier future for our nation’s children.”
Five gold medals were awarded to Aurora for action taken to improve access to healthy affordable food and increase opportunities for physical activity. Aurora is now at rank #1 in the country among the 522 communities participating in LMCTC.
“Although Colorado has the lowest adult obesity rate in the country, we are not doing that well with childhood obesity--the state is in 24th place,” said Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan. “That’s why these recognitions have a significant meaning; they represent the care and importance we put into making sure children in Aurora have access to adequate physical activity and healthy food and serves as a motivation to keep working on this issue.”
All LMCTC sites have the opportunity to earn up to five gold medals, one for each actionable goal to which they commit to as part of the initiative. Medals are awarded to local elected officials based on their achievements in each of the following five goal areas:
• Goal I: Start Early, Start Smart: Promoting best practices for nutrition, physical activity, and screen time in early care and education settings.
• Goal II: My Plate, Your Place: Prominently displaying MyPlate in all municipal or county venues where food is served.
• Goal III: Smart Servings for Students: Expanding access to meal programs before, during and after the school day, and/or over summer months.
• Goal IV: Model Food Service: Implementing healthy and sustainable food service guidelines that are aligned with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
• Goal V: Active Kids at Play: Increasing opportunities for physical activity.
NLC is working in partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and with the support of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the National Association of Counties and other nonprofit organizations, to assist local elected officials who join LMCTC as they implement policy and environmental changes to prevent childhood obesity. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded NLC a grant to provide technical assistance to local elected officials working to create healthier communities and prevent childhood obesity, including those participating in LMCTC.
More than 500 cities, towns and counties are participating in LMCTC, and 80 million Americans are now living in LMCTC communities that are dedicated to helping young people eat healthy foods and be physically active. Each month, NLC recognizes local elected officials who achieve key benchmarks for the five LMCTC goals. Since July 2012, NLC has awarded 3,294 bronze, silver, and gold medals to recognize local elected officials across the country for their LMCTC progress.
For more information about LMCTC and Aurora’s accomplishments, visit HealthyCommunitiesHealthyFuture.org.