CLEVELAND — Browns players and some lucky Cleveland area school children have at least one important thing in common – they love to play. In fact, the kids at Brecksville-Broadview Heights Middle School are being recognized for their commitment to healthy play by Browns offensive lineman Joe Thomas, team mascot Chomps and the American Dairy Association Mideast.
Joe Thomas and Chomps will join students at Brecksville-Broadview Heights Middle School on Tuesday, January 13 to share breakfast and discuss the importance of fueling up with a healthy breakfast, which includes nutrient-rich dairy foods, every day. Thomas will also present a Hometown Grant, developed by Fuel Up to Play 60 and the NFL, for $10,000 to the students to help their school meet its health and wellness goals. Each of the 32 NFL Clubs, Fuel Up to Play 60 and local dairy representatives will provide grants throughout the country totaling a $320,000 investment in youth health and wellness.
Brecksville-Broadview Heights Middle School won an inter-district competition that promotes a healthy lifestyle through 60 minutes of play a day. This campaign, called Love of Play, is designed to encourage both kids and adults to be active at home, at school and everywhere in between. The grant will be used to create a new indoor fitness center for the middle school students to enjoy physical activity.
Love of Play is a joint effort between The American Dairy Association Mideast, Fuel Up to Play 60, Quaker and the NFL. Research shows that physical activity, in combination with good nutrition, is essential to a healthy lifestyle. However, only 1 in 3 kids are active every day, potentially leaving many at a disadvantage inside and outside of the classroom.
“It’s been proven that kids who eat breakfast and are active perform better in the classroom and have more concentration in school,” said Jenny Hubble, American Dairy Association Mideast. “But this campaign is about more than the kids. We want their parents, teachers and other members of the community to get up and play as well.”
The Brecksville-Broadview Middle School is the only school to receive a special appearance from Joe Thomas to reward all of their hard work. Thomas is one of the Browns’ top offensive players and the starting left tackle for the team. He has played in the Pro Bowl for seven straight seasons. He enjoys giving back to the community, and especially talking to kids about how eating healthy can benefit them.
“I think it’s important for kids to make healthy eating choices so that they’re maintaining a healthy lifestyle throughout their lives,” said Thomas. “Kids need to give themselves energy for their brain and for their body so that they can go out and exercise the 60 minutes they need every day.”
A similar event featuring Bengals player Giovani Bernard and mascot WhoDey is being planned for late-January in the Cincinnati area at Amity Elementary.
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The American Dairy Association Mideast works on behalf of Ohio and West Virginia dairy farmers and serves as the local affiliate of the National Dairy Council, a leader in dairy nutrition research, education and communication since 1915. For more information, visitwww.drink-milk.com and www.ohiodairyfarmers.com