The 2008 Heart of Florida United Way Tri-County Needs Assessment identified the health of our children and families as one of many leading community concerns.
Healthy people are the foundation for vibrant, productive communities. Did you know . . .
- In Florida, one out of every four high school students (25.0%) is now overweight or obese.
- Florida ranks 23rd nationwide in life expectancy (77.5 years), which is below the national average and on par with the country of Chile, though Chile spends one-tenth what the United States spends on health care.
- Florida ranks 3rd nationwide in the percentage of individuals under age 65 without health insurance, and 2nd nationwide in the percentage of children (ages 0-18) without health insurance.
According to the United Way cabinet formed around this focus area, developing healthy children and families is defined as “Improving the health of children and families through partnerships that promote mental, physical and social well-being for all. This will be achieved by:
- Preventing behaviors and addressing environments that threaten the health and well-being of children and families.
- Promoting behaviors and environments that enhance the health and well-being of children and families
- Fostering supportive conditions at home and in our community that allows all generations to thrive together.
Our goal: Improving health for children, youth and adults by providing programs that support healthy beginnings, access to healthy choices and encouraging family engagement.
United Way recognizes that the pathway to better health and well-being varies based on the challenges and barriers each individual faces. Many of the determinants of health and well-being lie outside the boundaries of the health sector—they are socially and economically formed.
The goal of the Developing Healthy Children and Families investment area is to identify and invest in partners who move individuals of all ages forward to better health and well-being by providing opportunities for: healthy beginnings; access to healthy choices; and family engagement and education.