Community Challenge a great way to start the New Year on a healthier path IT’S TIME TEXAS Community Challenge begins Jan. 7 By: Kathy Barroso Chief Executive Officer Galveston County Health District
Are you looking for ways to eat healthier and be more active in 2019? Like most of us, one of your goals going into a New Year probably centers on health. Even with great intentions, motivation to stay on track can fade with each new week.
The IT’S TIME TEXAS Community Challenge is a free eight-week statewide competition that helps you create healthy habits while also helping your community compete for grant money and bragging rights!
The concept is simple. Individuals, schools and community leaders earn points for cities and towns by participating in healthy activities between Jan. 7-March 3, 2019. The online-based challenge is fun, easy and healthy!
To get started, go to www.ittcommunitychallenge.com to register and select your community. This quick step will earn you an easy 500 points to kick off the challenge and if you register before Jan. 7, you will receive 200 bonus points! Each time you log a healthy activity, you will be entered for prize drawings. The more points you earn, the more chances you have to win.
You can earn points for tracking physical activity and weight, watching a video about healthy living, hosting community events and taking healthy selfies. The selfies, worth 200 points each, simply show you participating in healthy activities or eating healthy! Already using a fitness tracker? Great, then you may be able to sync your fitness tracker to your Community Challenge account when you register so that your physical activity can be counted automatically.
Your community leaders also play a huge role in the effort. The mayor’s pledge to participate is worth 10,000 points while city council members who sign a pledge earn 2,500 points. There are several more ways for communities to earn points, including creating a mayor’s challenge video, hosting community events and establishing a health collaborative.
School representatives can earn points for their city AND school district! Thousands of points are available for school boards, principals and teachers who sign pledges to participate. Healthy lesson plans and staff activities also earn points.
There are also points up for grabs for businesses and organizations. Pledges, healthy activities and events are the primary ways for these groups to earn points.
I mentioned bragging rights because it’s a huge part of the idea behind the challenge. Who wouldn’t want their community to be well-represented not only in Galveston County, but also statewide? In addition to bragging rights, the Texas community that racks up the most points will also receive funds to put toward future community health efforts.
Texas City dominated other Galveston County cities in 2018 and 2017, finishing third in the state in the mid-size category both years. Are any other Galveston County cities up to the challenge?
Whether you’re participating as an individual or represent a city, school or organization, we are here to help! Check out www.gchd.org/challenge for more information about how to participate and contact information for assistance. Let us know about any events planned in your community and we’ll be sure to post them on our website.
During the challenge, make our Facebook page a regular stop for weekly point updates by community and school.
Making even the slightest change in your diet and physical activity can have a big impact in improving your overall health and well-being and reducing chronic diseases. So, sign up today and learn more at www.ittcommunitychallenge.com. IT’ TIME , Galveston County, let’s get healthy!
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The Galveston County Health District (GCHD) is the local public health agency for Galveston County, Texas.
GCHD provides services and programs that protect the everyday health and well-being of Galveston County.
P.O. Box 939 La Marque, Texas 77568 • (409) 938-7221