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Spartan Kids Foundation + Blessings in a Backpack Kick-Off Food & Fitness Campaign to Promote Healthy Lifestyles for Kids

March 17, 2021

Nationwide School Initiative to Add Spartan Physical Fitness Programming to Blessings’ Weekend Food Distribution

Boston — Spartan Kids Foundation, the not-for-profit arm of the world’s leading endurance sports and wellness brand Spartan, is expanding its alliance with Blessings in a Backpack, one of the nation’s largest providers of donated food for kids. Together, they’re launching a new Food & Fitness initiative called “Spartan KidFit” — a unique opportunity for elementary and middle school children to be healthy and have fun through exercise, strength, and teamwork.

“Spartan KidFit” will provide students served by Blessings in a Backpack with Spartan fitness training, free access to Spartan Kids races, onsite coaching, and fitness grants to promote healthy lifestyles. The program is designed to complement the nutritional service that Blessings provides by addressing a growing need — heightened by the COVID-19 health emergency — that more than half of U.S. youth are not getting enough exercise.

“Blessings in a Backpack looks forward to adding the Spartan physical fitness components to our growing food distribution programming for thousands of children nationwide,” said Erin Kerr, CEO of Blessings in a Backpack. “We hope this new Food & Fitness campaign will address the need for fun and healthy physical activity that many kids have been missing this past year.”

With the growing hope that schools will safely return to onsite classes this year, “Spartan KidsFit” will operate through Blessings in a Backpack’s national school network, with programming onsite and online.

The Timing is Right: Kids Need a Healthy Alternative to Screen Time

According to a recent NY Times article, children’s screen time has doubled during the pandemic as computers, tablets, and phones have become the centerpiece of school and social life. Ideally, the innovative and engaging Spartan Kids fitness programming will offer a healthier alternative and help to refocus attention on physical activities, such as running, jumping, and other kid-friendly forms of exercise.

“Spartan is proud and excited to expand our partnership with Blessings to launch this Food & Fitness campaign. This includes fitness training, coaching, and free race events and fitness grants for their national school network,” said Al Schreiber co-founder, co-director of Spartan Kids Foundation. “Building on the success of our partnership last year, adding the fitness component to Blessings in a Backpack’s food platform delivers a Spartan-proven, pro bono phys-ed tool-kit for schools that offers the opportunity to encourage healthier and more active lifestyles.”

The Spartan Kids Foundation and Blessings in a Backpack began their successful partnership in spring 2020 to help kids struggling with food insecurity during the COVID-19 school closures. Through a series of effective campaigns and combined fundraising efforts, in 2020, the Spartan Kids Foundation and Blessings in a Backpack raised almost $250,000 to provide more than 60,000 hunger-free weekends for kids across America.

ABOUT BLESSINGS IN A BACKPACK:

Hunger has both short- and long-term negative effects on children’s health and ability to succeed in school. Blessings in a Backpack mobilizes communities, individuals, and resources to provide food on the weekends for elementary school children across America who might otherwise go hungry. Blessings in a Backpack will provide 3 million hunger-free weekends this school year for more than 88,900 kids in 46 states and Washington, D.C. Visit blessingsinabackpack.org to learn how you can end childhood hunger on the weekends in your community.

ABOUT SPARTAN KIDS FOUNDATION:

Since its founding four years ago, Spartan Kids Foundation (spartankidsfoundation,org)  has helped bring better health and fitness programs to over 50,000 underserved children in more than 200 schools and youth organizations. SKF has also distributed over 1,500 free Kids Race tickets to children who could not otherwise afford to attend. In 2019, SKF launched the SKF Fitness Grants initiative that has awarded cash stipends for 50 Title I schools nationwide. Last year, SKF, working with Blessings in a Backpack, helped raise almost $250,000 to provide hunger-free weekends for food-insecure kids nationwide. Visit spartankidsfoundation.org to learn more.

ABOUT SPARTAN

Spartan is a global experiential sport and wellness brand with a 10 million+ strong community. We create transformational experiences, products, and content to help people, companies and teams tear down boundaries and expand what they believe to be possible. Spartan combines large scale global events with a vibrant digital Content and Community Platform. With more than 250 events across more than 40 countries on six continents, Spartan is the world’s leading extreme wellness and endurance brand. Visit spartan.com for more information and registration.