KC Healthy Kids announces 2015 winners of "I AM HERE" Youth Photo Contest. $6,000 in awards are to be used for health and wellness promotion at schools.

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KC Healthy Kids, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the health of Greater Kansas City's children, has announced the recipients of six $1,000 first place awards for I AM HERE the nonprofit’s youth photo contest designed to empower students to speak out for healthy communities.

I AM HERE

At our school, the arts serve as catalyst for learning, achievement, curiosity and self-esteem.

KC Healthy Kids, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the health of Greater Kansas City's children, has announced the recipients of six $1,000 first place awards for I AM HERE, the nonprofit’s youth photo contest designed to empower students to speak out for healthy communities.

The awardees are:

  • 3rd Grade: Academy for Integrated Arts; Andrea Davis and Asha Moore, teacher; Kansas City Charter School
  • 4th Grade: EPiC Elementary; Jenifer Schwandt and Katie Haberberger, teachers; Liberty Public Schools
  • 5th Grade: Hazel Grove Elementary; Cheryl McLaughlin, teacher; Lee’s Summit R-7 School District
  • 6th Grade: Faxon Elementary; Teri Campos, teacher; Kansas City Public Schools
  • 7th Grade: Holy Cross Catholic School; Katie Mills, teacher; Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph
  • 8th Grade: Rosedale Middle School; Antonio Droge, teacher; Kansas City Kansas Public Schools

“At our school, the arts serve as catalyst for learning, achievement, curiosity and self-esteem, and the photo contest helps us use the art of photography as a platform for teaching our students to be advocates and community leaders too,” said Tricia DeGraff, principal of Academy for Integrated Arts.    

“The students have talked a lot about buying recess equipment, since we don’t have a play ground. I know they are going to want balls, especially, because they are always going flat or getting stuck on the roof,” DeGraff said.

The six winning schools are expected to use the awards to promote student wellness. The awards ceremony lifts up the voices of students in grades 3-8 as they share their ideas about how to create a healthier Kansas City. Each classroom submitted captioned photos illustrating how their communities help and hinder healthy habits.

Through the contest, teachers helped students think critically about how their surroundings – walking trails or broken sidewalks, safe playgrounds or blighted lots, schoolyard gardens or fast food restaurants – impact their health.

The awards will be presented at the I AM HERE unveiling ceremony on March 4. Students will take the stage to receive the checks on behalf of their schools, speak about what I AM HERE means to them, and give a face to youth advocacy in Kansas City. The ceremony includes appetizers, presentations by students from winning classrooms, awards and the satisfaction of knowing you have supported youth advocacy in Kansas City.

The ceremony is set for 6:00 p.m. at the Gallery Event Space in the Power & Light District, 61 E. 14th Street, Kansas City, Mo 64105. Tickets are $75 for adults and $35 for youth up to 8th grade and can be purchased online at http://www.kchealthykids.org/iamhere. Sponsorships are still available.

Event proceeds help KC Healthy Kids empower communities for healthy eating and active living. Funds raised also benefit Greater Kansas City's schools through I AM HERE's cash awards.

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About KC Healthy Kids
Since 2015, KC Healthy Kids has worked to improve the health of Greater Kansas City's children. They partner with communities and organizations to advance policies and environmental changes that support healthy eating and active living.

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Sarah Shipley
KC Healthy Kids
+1 (202) 577-7141
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