Building Healthy Communities Program

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We pay a high price for childhood obesity in our state. It affects children's health and school performance.

Building Healthy Communities works to create supportive school environments through healthy eating and physical activity.

We have three programs: The Step Up for School Wellness program, the elementary school program and the middle school program.

These programs:

  • Educate students through classroom lessons
  • Create an environment that makes the healthy choice the easy choice
  • Encourage students to practice lessons learned in the classroom
  • Provide opportunities for physical activity
  • Improve access to healthy food and beverages

Who's eligible?

Any public, charter or private nonprofit school in Michigan is eligible regardless of their:

  • Free and reduced-price school meal percentage
  • Geographic location
  • Participation in other school wellness grants, programs or initiatives

If your school has already participated in a Building Healthy Communities program, you're not eligible to apply at this time. Here's a list of schools (PDF) that have participated.

How can I apply?

We're currently accepting applications for the Step Up for School Wellness program and elementary school program.

Applications are due March 18, 2016 for the Step up for School Wellness program and March 30, 2016 for the elementary school program.

Select a program below for more information about the program and how you can apply.


Watch this video to see how Building Healthy Communities is helping Michigan kids get healthier.


Our partners

We founded Building Healthy Communities in 2009 to fight childhood obesity and lead children to a healthier future. It's grown into a collaboration among organizations committed to improving the health of children and improving childhood obesity. The following organizations are participating in the program:


Woodrow Wilson Elementary School students playing HOPSports.

A Building Healthy Communities school spotlight

The recess cart full of playground equipment allows Gaudior Academy in Inkster to have an "Active Recess". The students, kindergarten through eighth grade, enjoy the fun physical activity the cart provides.

This resource is led and used by students. Members of the Student Leadership team created a schedule to coordinate being responsible for bringing the cart out, overseeing it, and returning it into the building.


"Every piece of equipment is used every recess, by everyone, and it is great to see everyone playing. We have children playing 4-square and using the long jump ropes. They even had me jumping!"
Rosemarie Gonzales, Principal of Gaudior Academy

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