million in women's health care grants made available
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[September 10, 2008]
SPRINGFIELD -- Continuing his
commitment to improving health care in Illinois, Gov. Rod R.
Blagojevich on Tuesday announced more than $1.2 million in Women's
Health Initiative grants to nonprofit organizations, health
departments and service agencies throughout Illinois. The grants
will fund educational programs that address cardiovascular disease,
nutrition, physical activity and osteoporosis. These grants will
continue to strengthen Blagojevich's commitment to improving the
overall picture of health care in Illinois.
"Learning about good health, especially at an early age, can help us
live healthier and longer lives," Blagojevich said. "Routine health
screenings and early detection can sometimes mean the difference
between life and death, which is why it is so important to fund
programs that teach women -- our mothers, sisters and wives -- how
to take care of their health."
The Illinois Department of Public
Health's Office of Women's Health administers the Women's Health
Initiative grants, which are awarded to organizations that implement
programs that provide guidance on issues related to nutrition,
exercise, risk assessment, treatment options and prevention
"These grants will fund programs that teach women and girls about
the health challenges they may face, such as cancer, heart disease,
menopause and osteoporosis. The information these women learn will
help them make positive behavioral changes that will help improve
their lives and possibly prevent some of these chronic diseases,"
said Dr. Damon T. Arnold, director of the Illinois Department of
The Women's Health Initiative grants
for fiscal 2009 include the following seven programs:
Heart Smart for
Women, a 12-week community-based program designed to change
unhealthy behavior while promoting the benefits of exercise and
Heart Smart for
Teens, a nine-week nutrition and exercise curriculum geared to
Bones, a program for women that offers group education sessions
as well as bone density screenings for osteoporosis.
Prevention for Teens, a program targeting high school freshman
and sophomore students that includes a presentation on
osteoporosis and several activities, such as a nutrition
demonstration and exercises to promote bone building.
Jump Girl Jump, a four-session
structured jump rope and nutrition program for grade school
girls, designed to create awareness of bone health, physical
activity and the importance of calcium intake.
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Menopause, a program that offers educational sessions to help
women understand peri-menopause and menopause and inform them
about related health issues.
LifeSmart for Women, a 10-week
comprehensive education curriculum appropriate to a widely
diverse audience of women and covering a variety of women's
health topics, including cardiovascular disease, stroke,
diabetes, nutrition, fitness, stress, substance abuse, violence
against women, sexual health, aging and family health.
"We want to thank the governor and the Illinois Department of
Public Health for the Women's Health Initiative grant for Heart
Smart for Women," said Diane Ahern, the Heart Smart program manager
at Advocate Good Samaritan Health and Wellness Center in Downers
Grove. "Our goal is to help women increase daily activity and
improve their nutrition habits so that they feel healthier and
reduce their risk of health problems such as heart disease, obesity
and osteoporosis. Heart Smart is about women supporting other women.
Our graduates have reported lower blood pressure, increased
knowledge, more energy and reduced stress. All this while taking
control of their health through becoming more active and making
better food choices."
For a list of Women's Health Initiative grant recipients, visit
For more information on
women's health and programs offered
through the Illinois Department of Public Health, visit
call the Women's Health-Line at 888-522-1282 or, for hearing
impaired use only, 800-547-0466 TTY.
[Text from file received from
Illinois Office of
Communication and Information]