Monday, November 18, 2013

Donation from Kohl's renews CARDIAC Kids community health effort

Children from Summit School in Nixa attended an assembly on Nov. 12 to learn about staying heart healthy – in a kid-friendly way.

It was the kickoff to a renewed partnership between CoxHealth and Kohl’s Cares that aims to identify children at risk for obesity and heart disease, and teach them and their families how to live a healthier lifestyle.

Childhood obesity has become an epidemic in the United States, and southwest Missouri is not immune. Poor eating habits, improper nutrition and a lack of exercise can lead to serious health problems as children grow. With the $41,916 donation from Kohl’s Cares, CoxHealth is continuing the Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids program, which will work to fight the childhood obesity epidemic through a variety of fun events and health screenings aimed at children ages 5 to 18 and their families.

Through the program, at-risk children and adolescents are identified and are able to learn more about living a healthy life.

“We know childhood obesity is a widespread and dangerous problem. Thanks to Kohl’s Cares, we’re able to make a real impact on the health of area children, teaching them about exercise, nutrition and healthy choices in a fun and engaging way,” said Lauren Holland, CoxHealth Health and Wellness educator and Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids coordinator.

More than 1,000 area children participated in CARDIAC Kids health screenings during the past grant year. Through the screenings, 400 participating children were found to be overweight or at risk for becoming overweight, and 203 children were found to be at risk for high blood pressure.

These children and their families received follow-up education, including healthy, kid-friendly recipes, exercises and more. Year-to-year results are tracked and analyzed for trends.

Since 2011, Kohl’s has donated more than $132,000 to CoxHealth to support the CARDIAC Kids Program. Kohl's commitment to CoxHealth is made possible through the Kohl's Cares cause merchandise program. Through this initiative, Kohl’s sells $5 books and plush toys, with 100 percent of net profit benefiting children’s health and education programs nationwide, including hospital partnerships like this one. Kohl's has raised more than $231 million through this merchandise program.

In addition to the merchandise program, Kohl's Cares features the Kohl's Cares Scholarship Program, which last year recognized more than 2,300 young volunteers with more than $400,000 in scholarships and prizes. Through Kohl’s Associates in Action volunteer program, more than 669,000 associates have donated more than 2.2 million hours of their time since 2001, and Kohl’s has donated more than $63 million to youth-focused nonprofit organizations. Kohl’s also offers fundraising gift cards for schools and youth-serving organizations. For more information, visit