U.S. Surgeon General Brings Healthy Lifestyle Message to Detroit and the Munger Pre-K to 8 School

Public Invited to Community Walk with America’s Doctor

The 925 students of Detroit Public Schools’ (DPS)  Munger Pre-K to 8 School in Detroit, Michigan hosted a very special guest Friday, October 12.

The Nation’s 18th Surgeon General Dr. Regina Benjamin paid a visit to the school, joined students for lunch and led a community “Surgeon General’s Walk” around the school.

Dr. Benjamin, who also chairs the National Prevention Council, is visiting the Detroit area to hold regional meetings to promote the National Prevention Strategy.  The National Prevention Strategy provides steps that everyone can take – businesses, educators, health care institutions, government, communities and every single American – to help us become a healthy and fit nation.

The First Lady’s Let’s Move! Childhood obesity initiative and USDA’s MyPLate healthy food portion program were also highlighted by Dr. Benjamin during her visit.

The Munger students hosted America’s Doctor in the school cafeteria for a healthy lunch that included Michigan-grown acorn squash.  Benjamin also  enjoyed a tour of the new school, participated in the Henry Ford Health System’s LiveWell Line Dance and rallied in the gymnasium to lead the “Surgeon General’s Walk” around the school.

The Surgeon General’s Walk, which was co-sponsored by Detroit Public Schools and Henry Ford Health System, was free and open to the public and included giveaways and refreshments.

Munger participates in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s Farm to School program; a collaboration between the DPS Office of School Nutrition and the local farming community to bring the delivery of fresh fruits and vegetables straight to school cafeterias.

The program, which supports Michigan’s farmers and increases students’ exposure to fresh foods, is offered at every DPS school.  This is just one part of DPS’ efforts to reduce child hunger and offer access to healthy foods through USDA’s National School Lunch & Breakfast Programs.

DPS also offers all students a healthy breakfast, lunch and snack each day, a new option available as a result of the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010.

The $22.3 million combination Munger elementary and middle school opened its doors in Southwest Detroit earlier this year.   Munger was among the final three new DPS schools that opened this fall as part of the district’s $500.5 million School Construction Program.

About the National Prevention Strategy

The National Prevention and Health Promotion Strategy is a comprehensive plan that will help increase the number of Americans who are healthy at every stage of life.  Created by the National Prevention, Health Promotion, and Public Health Council in consultation with the public and an Advisory Group of outside experts, the Strategy recognizes that good health comes not just from receiving quality medical care but from stopping disease before it starts.  Good health also comes from clean air and water, safe outdoor spaces for physical activity, safe worksites, healthy foods, violence-free environments and healthy homes.  Prevention should be woven into all aspects of our lives, including where and how we live, learn, work and play.  Everyone—businesses, educators, health care institutions, government, communities and every single American—has a role in creating a healthier nation.

Called for by the Affordable Care Act, the National Prevention Strategy includes actions that public and private partners can take to help Americans stay healthy and fit.  It helps move the nation away from a health care system focused on sickness and disease to one focused on wellness and prevention.

About the U.S. Surgeon General

Regina M. Benjamin, MD, MBA is the 18th Surgeon General of the United States. As America’s Doctor, she provides the public with the best scientific information available on how to improve their health and the health of the nation. Dr. Benjamin also oversees the operational command of 6,500 uniformed public health officers who serve in locations around the world to promote, and protect the health of the American People. In addition, she serves as Chair of the National Prevention Council.

About Munger Pre-K to 8 School

Located at the site of the former Munger and Chadsey schools in a thriving section of Southwest Detroit, bright, sustainable classrooms, colorful corridors, an academic commons, and teacher work centers are focal points of this new $22.3 million educational facility. The Munger Pre-K to 8 School is designed to accommodate between 850 and 1,100 students and is part of the Detroit Public School district’s $500.5 million capital improvement program funded by voter-approved Proposal S dollars.  Completed in 2012, the academic campus includes an elementary and middle school wing connected by a multi-purpose area that functions as a school cafeteria.

About Detroit Public Schools

Detroit Public Schools is creating Centers of Excellence at its 100 schools with the goal of educating students to perform at the highest academic levels. DPS offers a wide variety of educational advantages to students and parents including Individualized Learning Maps for all students, and Academic Blueprints for all parents. Students in grades 8-12 enjoy take-home Netbooks and students in grades 6 and up have access to Netbooks in school. An outstanding Fine Arts Program with instrumental music, vocal music and dance is also offered. Ongoing advantages include nine new self-governing schools, Detroit Rising College Preparatory Schools, and DPS-authorized charter schools led by educators with proven track records of raising achievement. In 2012, DPS graduates earned more than $106 million in grants and scholarships. To learn more about Detroit Public Schools, visit www.detroitk12.org.

About Henry Ford Health System

Henry Ford Health System, one of the country’s largest and most comprehensive integrated health care systems, is a national leader in clinical care, research and education. The system includes the 1,200-member Henry Ford Medical Group, five hospitals, Health Alliance Plan (a health insurance and wellness company), Henry Ford Physician Network, a 150-site ambulatory network and many other health-related entities throughout southeast Michigan, providing a full continuum of care. In 2010, Henry Ford provided nearly $200 million in uncompensated care. The health system also is a major economic driver in Michigan and employs more than 24,000 people. Henry Ford is a 2011 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient. The health system is led by CEO Nancy Schlichting. To learn more, visit HenryFord.com.


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