Reporting Matt Roush
DETROIT — More than 40 entries were submitted, but just a few made the cut as finalists for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan’s “Make the Play for Healthy Habits” video contest.
In January, the Blues asked fourth to eighth graders in Michigan for ways to help make Michigan healthier, and below are the five statewide finalists.
The winner will be decided by public votes on www.aHealthierMichigan.org/kidcontest where the videos will be posted.
Voting opens at noon on April 13 and runs through April 25 at midnight, with the winner announced May 7.
The finalists are:
Kailey Head, a fourth grader from North Elementary in Newport
Jalen Johnson, a fifth grader from Forest Elementary School in Farmington Hills
Kate LeLone, an eighth grader from Cherryland Middle School in Elk Rapids
Marissa Orzame, a sixth grader from Boulan Park Middle School in Troy
Hailey Samples, a fifth grader from Warner Upper Elementary in Farmington Hills
The winning student will go on to star as a guest video blogger on www.aHealthierMichigan.org , and his or her school will receive a school assembly with Matthew Stafford, Detroit Lions quarterback. The program was inspired by 10-year-old Marshall Reid from North Carolina, who documented his fight against childhood obesity through “Portion Size Me” videos.
Video submissions answered the question: “What would you do to make Michigan healthier?” and include how to live a healthy life, starting with the student, their family and/or their classroom, and how to communicate healthy lifestyle choices with families and students.
The contest adds a new dimension to the Blues’ efforts to combat childhood obesity by encouraging kids to share their ideas using creativity and new media. According to the Centers for Disease Control, childhood obesity has both immediate and long-term effects on health and well-being. Schools play a particularly critical role by establishing a safe and supportive environment with policies and practices that support healthy behaviors. Schools also provide opportunities for students to learn about and practice healthy eating and physical activity behaviors.