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Youth Wellness Initiative Turns $1,000 Award Into $250,000

Students at Flagler Palm Coast High School in Bunnell, Fla., have shown commitment to projects that increase rigorous and relevant academics, while building relationships among students, staff, schools and the community. The Community Problem Solvers group devised a youth wellness initiative called Project GYM (Getting Youth Moving), and recently received a $1,000 grant through the Florida Department of Health’s Youth Empowered Ambassador for Health (YEAH!) Summit.

Through other grants and matching funds, Project GYM has increased their project funds to nearly $250,000, and has established a Youth Wellness Center at Bunnell Elementary School called The Jungle Gym. The gym encourages youth to explore opportunities to participate in physical activity alongside peers and is equipped with youth-sized Nautilus equipment, treadmills, bikes, and a stretching station.

Project GYM has also recently won first place at the state and international competitions in the Community Problem Solving Category of the Future Problem Solving Program International. Project GYM received another grant to open its second youth gym at a school district-owned wellness center, which will open by the 2007-08 school year.