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University of Iowa News Release

 

Sept. 7, 2007

UI Children's Hospital to receive donation from Kohl's

Leaders of University of Iowa Children's Hospital will accept a generous donation of $119,431 tomorrow (Sept. 8) from associates of Kohl's Department Stores during a special fitness event for children and families at the Kohl's location in Coralville.

Beginning at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 8, special booths outside Kohl's will provide free healthy breakfast samples and recipes to children and parents. Inside the store, additional information booths will be available to help students learn how to incorporate fitness into their daily school schedules. Families can participate in fitness walks in the store. The first 100 people to attend the event will receive free pedometers. Attendees can also register for a special drawing for prizes.

At 9:30 a.m., Kohl's associates will present an oversized check to UI Children's Hospital leaders to kick off the 2007 Kohl's Cares for Kids Program.

The donation will be used to continue funding a local coalition that teaches low-income families and their children how to make healthy choices in an effort to reduce the rate of childhood obesity.

The project, called Kohl's Wellness Is Learning and Doing (WILD) Kids, is a joint effort that includes UI Children's Hospital, Kohl's Department Stores, Neighborhood Centers of Johnson County and the American Academy of Pediatrics' Iowa division.

Approximately 2,200 children throughout Johnson County have already benefited from WILD. The effort engages children and their families in healthy snacking and fitness activities. The project helps children learn how to make good dietary choices and develop an active lifestyle.

The incidence of adult and childhood obesity in the United States is skyrocketing, having increased by 35 percent in the past 10 years. Nationally, more than 15 percent of children and adolescents are either overweight or obese, and more than 10 percent of preschool age children are overweight.

"Being obese as a child dramatically increases a person's risk for being obese as an adult and for developing obesity-related disorders, such as diabetes and heart disease," said Michael Artman, M.D., physician-in-chief at UI Children's Hospital. "Obesity prevention is a national imperative and must begin early in the life of a child with interventions that target both children and their families."

Since 1999, Kohl's has donated $992,149.56 to UI Children's Hospital. Other initiatives supported through Kohl's Cares for Kids include the UI Children's Hospital-Kohl's Health and Safety Initiatives, Starbright World, Reach Out and Read, CarePage Service, the hospital tutor program and its renovated pediatrics classroom, family-centered care initiatives, and community outreach projects.

The Kohl's commitment to UI Children's Hospital is made possible through Kohl's Cares for Kids. Net profits from the sales of special merchandise supports children's health and education; through 2006, Kohl's has raised more than $85 million for such initiatives nationwide. The program also includes Kohl's Kids Who Care Scholarship Program for youth volunteers, fundraising gift cards for local schools and nonprofit youth groups, as well as an associate program to encourage volunteerism.

Based in Menomonee Falls, Wis., Kohl's is a family-focused, value-oriented specialty department store offering moderately priced exclusive and national brand apparel, shoes, accessories and beauty and home products. A company committed to the communities it serves, Kohl's operates 834 stores in 46 states and has raised more than $85 million for children's initiatives nationwide through its Kohl's Cares for Kids philanthropic program. For a list of store locations and information, or for the added convenience of shopping online, visit Kohl's Web site at http://www.kohls.com.

UI Children's Hospital serves children and their families at its main campus in Iowa City and satellite clinics in communities throughout the region. A 180-bed "hospital within a hospital," UI Children's Hospital benefits from the sophisticated services and comprehensive resources of UI Hospitals and Clinics. Child magazine ranks UI Children's Hospital among the top 20 children's hospitals in the nation.

STORY SOURCE: Joint Office for Marketing and Communications, University of Iowa Health Care, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room E110 GH, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Moore, UI Health Care, 319-356-3945, thomas-moore@uiowa.edu.