‘Eat, Play, Grow’ wins 2017 Mayo Clinic Shared Value Award

April 3, 2018

Mayo Clinic staff voted overwhelmingly that local efforts to empower children and families to eat, play and grow healthier should win the 2017 Shared Value Award. The annual award provides $30,000 in funding to a collaborative community effort that addresses a priority local community health need.

“Eat, Play, Grow” is a program that aims to address obesity and financial stress — two health needs identified in the 2016 Olmsted County Community Health Needs Assessment. It also is a project that honors a core Mayo Clinic value: teamwork. Each partner
in the project plays an important role in helping up to 900 local children and families make better choices in what they eat and how they play to grow healthfully. Those partners are:

Minnesota Children’s Museum – Rochester
The group is developing the program curriculum and providing space for activities.

Olmsted County Public Health
The organization is sharing the perspectives of children and families to be served.

Families First of Minnesota
The group is connecting the program to children and families most likely to benefit.

Childhood Obesity Task Force
The task force is helping with program design, measurement and sharing outcomes.

Rochester Hy-Vee stores
The local stores are providing dietitian expertise; healthy foods for program events; and tasty, healthy recipes to inspire participating families, parents, grandparents and caregivers.

“We know that one-third of our school-age children in Rochester qualify for free and reduced lunches,” says Heidi Mestad, executive director for the Minnesota Children’s Museum — Rochester. For a lot of families, it is very
difficult to eat healthfully on a tight budget.”

Mestad says the Mayo Clinic Shared Value Award and grant will help grow the support for families in the community and make it easier for kids and families to choose nutritious, affordable foods; prepare them; and incorporate
fun, physical activities into their schedules

“Minnesota Children’s Museum — Rochester is focused on health and well-being as a central impact area for our region,” Mestad says. “With this grant and our collaborative partners, we will further make a difference and inspire
our community members through experiential learning.”

We know that one-third of our school-age children in Rochester qualify for free and reduced lunches,” says Heidi Mestad, executive director for the Minnesota Children’s Museum – Rochester. For a lot of families, it is very
difficult to eat healthfully on a tight budget.

Voting for the Shared Value Award was promoted through the 2017 Mayo Clinic Community Giving Campaign.

“We are very thankful to all who participated in the 2017 Mayo Clinic Community Giving Campaign, including advocates, donors and Shared Value Award finalists and voters,” says Erin Sexton, director, Community Relations, Mayo
Clinic. The other finalists’ projects focused on interventions for adverse childhood experiences and efforts to address poverty. Visit the Shared Value Award intranet site to learn more about these initiatives