July 9, 2013 / Issue XVI


Featured Resources  
For Parents

Let's Move's Energize Our Families: Parent Program is a multiple-session curriculum designed to provide parents and caregivers with the knowledge and skills they need, along with practical tools, to help families maintain a healthy weight. Specific topics include shopping for healthy food on a budget, controlling portion sizes, increasing physical activity in youth and reducing family screen time. More information

Upcoming webinars:

Download action plan for parents     


For Policymakers    


Women In Government announced the launch of the Childhood Obesity Policy Resource Center, designed to provide information and resources regarding issues surrounding childhood obesity, including policies that support physical activity in schools, access to healthy, affordable foods, and street-scale and community improvements
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CPT Member Minute  
Bridget Kramer, Greater East End Management District


At the June Community Planning Team meeting, member Bridget Kramer spoke about the mission of the Greater east End Management District and highlighted current East End projects. The mission includes economic development and infrastructure improvement, with a large focus on community involvement. Highlights of current projects included:


  • Graffiti abatement for the whole City of Houston
  • Grant for bike/hike trails to connect the Near Northside community to the bayou systems in East End
  • East End Street Market, which will encourage microenterprise opportunities and will be located on the Navigation Esplanade in a three-block area near Ninfa's and is scheduled to open November 2
  • Street Car Study for transportation to points of interest in East End like the Street Market
  • Culture & educational facilities 
  • Green space which will be added next to the Street Market and will be run by East End Foundation

HLM asked Kashmere Gardens residents: What do healthy children mean to you?

HLM attended the Kashmere Gardens Keep Kashmere Alive! Picnic on June 22 and asked residents what healthy children mean to them. Click here to see pictures from the event.

Texas Obesity News

150 miles of hike and bike trails to be built in Houston after city council approves plan

Thanks to a bond election passed last November and private funds secured by the Houston Parks Board, the City of Houston is well on its way to a 100-year-old plan for 150 miles of continuous hike and bike trails along its iconic bayous. 

Houston City Council unanimously approved this fund-matching partnership on Wednesday, which will funnel a total of $205 million to the Bayou Greenways 2020 project.


"Every section of Houston will benefit from this initiative," said Mayor Annise Parker at a press conference, noting that the first priority is connecting more residents to larger portions of the trail. Full article  


HLM Policy Liaison Tim Schauer featured on "Growing Up in America"

With hosts Bob Sanborn and Mandi Kimball from Children at Risk, Tim Schauer, from Cornerstone Government Affairs and Policy Team Lead for Healthy Living Matters, discusses recent legislative successes and challenges of the 83rd Legislative. Some of the successes include the passing of House Bill 217 proposed by Representative Carol Alvarado, calling for the removal of sugar sweetened beverages from Texas schools. Among the challenges were multiple bills proposed to increase physical activity in schools, none of which were passed. Listen to the full episode of "Growing up in America" here.

Houston transit ridership up in 2013

After a trend of declining ridership over the past few years, the Metropolitan Transit Authority seems to be holding on to riders even as other large transit systems lose passengers.

In the first quarter of 2013, Houston transit ridership grew 2.6 percent, to an average of 288,300 trips per day, according to the American Public Transit Association. The group compiles ridership data for all major transit systems in the country, across all modes of travel including bus, rail, van pool and door-to-door service for the disabled. Full article    


Texas Baby Caf�s address obesity at an early age 
Formula-fed babies are two-and-a-half times more likely to become obese by age two than those who were breast-fed during the first six months of life, says a recent study published in Pediatric Obesity

In Edinburg, Texas, moms and their babies can enjoy the obesity-preventing benefits of breastfeeding at the Baby Caf�, a comfortable and supportive setting that provides pregnant and breastfeeding women with information and problem-solving advice. Part of the WIC program, but open to anyone, the Edinburg location is the second for Hidalgo County and the eighth in Texas, opening in December 2012 the Women's Hospital at Renaissance. Full article 


National Obesity News

USDA releases new "Smart Snacks in School" nutrition standards

The Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards support better health for our kids and echo the good work already taking place in schools across the country. The new standards preserve flexibility for time-honored traditions like fundraisers and bake sales, and provide ample transition time for schools. USDA is committed to working closely with students, parents, school stakeholders and the food and beverage industries to implement the new guidelines, and make the healthy choice the easy choice for America's young people. New standards

Highlights of the Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards include:

-- More of the foods we should encourage. 

-- Less of the foods we should avoid.
-- Targeted beverage standards allowing variation by age group. 
-- Flexibility for important traditions.
-- Ample time for implementation.

American Medical Association declares obesity a disease 

The American Medical Assn. voted Tuesday to declare obesity a disease, a move that effectively defines 78 million American adults and 12 million children as having a medical condition requiring treatment. The nation's leading physicians organization took the vote after debating whether the action would do more to help affected patients get useful treatment or would further stigmatize a condition with many causes and few easy fixes.


In the end, members of the AMA's House of Delegates rejected cautionary advice from their own experts and extended the new status to a condition that affects more than one-third of adults and 17% of children in the United States. Full article   

New study: Community-based intervention programs more effective at preventing childhood obesity

When it comes to confronting childhood obesity, researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health conclude that community-based approaches are important. A systematic review of childhood obesity prevention programs found that community-based intervention programs that incorporate schools and focus on both diet and physical activity are more effective at preventing obesity in children. The results of the study appear online in
Pediatrics. Full article

Childhood obesity reduced by stricter state and school policies on sugar and fat

A new study found that the right type of policies could help to reduce sugar and fat intake among American public school children, and ultimately help to reduce childhood obesity. Researchers analyzed data from elementary schools between 2008 and 2011. A total of 1,814 elementary schools in 957 districts and 45 states were surveyed for the food analysis, and 1,830 elementary schools in 962 districts for the beverage analysis. The researchers found that sweets were 11.2 percent less available when both the school district and the state had policies in place that limited sugar content in school lunches.  Full article
HLM Collaborative Meeting, July 16th, 1-3pm 
Panel Discussion: Financing Policy Decisions 



Chris Browne, Edminster Hinshaw Russ & Associates, Inc.  

Tom McCasland, Harris County Housing Authority 

Daphne Lemelle, Harris County Community Services Dept

David Kim, City of Houston Housing & Community Development Dept  

Wesley Community Center

1410 Lee St, Houston, TX 77009 


Scroll to bottom of this page or visit our
website for more upcoming events!
Upcoming Events


Houston Food Policy Workgroup Meeting
Wednesday, July 10, 11:30-1:00pm
Upper Kirby Bulding, Downstairs Conference Room 3015 Richmond Ave. Houston, Texas 77098
More information

Webinar: Let's Move Faith and Communities- Media Smart Youth: Eat, Think and Be Active!
Thursday, July 11, 11:00-1:00pm

Healthy Living Matters Collaborative Meeting
Tuesday, July 16, 1:00-3:00pm
1410 Lee St, Houston, TX 77009 
Webinar: Let's Move Faith and Communities- Energize our Families Parent Program
Wednesday, July 17, 12:00-2:00pm
A Walking Tour of White Oak Bayou Construction
Saturday, July 20, 9:00-10:30am
Meet at a church parking lot near the site: 2025 W. 11th Street, Houston, TX

Webinar: Let's Move Faith and Communities- Media Smart Youth: Eat, Think and Be Active!
Tuesday, July 23, 12:00-2:00pm
Livable Houston Initiative
Wednesday, July 24, 12:00-1:30pm
H-GAC Building 2nd Floor, Room C, 3555 Timmons Ln. Houston, TX 77027
More information

Webinar: Let's Move Faith and Communities- Energize our Families Parent Program
Wednesday, July 31, 12:00-2:00pm


Toral Sindha, RD, LD

Community/ Stakeholder Engagement Team Lead



Susan Lackey, MPH

Community/ Stakeholder Engagement Team Coordinator