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Congressman Gonzalez Announces More than $340,000 in Federal Funds to Launch UTRGV Childhood Obesity Prevention Program

September 25, 2017
Press Release

EDINBURG, TX— Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) announced that the U.S. Offices of Public Health and Science and Minority Health within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) $344,689 to establish a childhood obesity prevention program.

With this grant, UTRGV will establish the South Texas Early Prevent Study Pre-K (STEPS Pre-K) Project (Childhood Obesity), which falls under the Minority Health Community Programs to Improve Minority Health.

“We must do all that we can to ensure our children lead happy and healthy lives,” Congressman Gonzalez said. “Childhood obesity can cause severe health problems down the line. With this funding, UTRGV can develop prevention and early childhood health programs that encourage children to form healthy habits starting at a young age."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has classified childhood obesity as a critical issue in the U.S. and asserted that children remain at risk for poor health, despite recent declines. The CDC reports that obesity amongst children is still too high.

Congressman Gonzalez is excited to see first-hand the positive impacts the UTRGV program will have on the health and safety of South Texas children.