United Way: Working for healthier lives and lifestyles
To improve quality of life for community, we must address people's health needs, risks, and resources for medical, dental and mental health care. We are committed to improving access to quality health care and reducing risks and behaviors, such as obesity, smoking, physical inactivity, alcohol and drug abuse, food insecurity, and teen pregnancies.
Ross County residents will have access to services they need to become and remain physically and mentally healthy.
Our goal is to increase the number of Ross County youth and adults who are healthy and avoid risky behaviors. Our efforts will focus on expanding access to quality health care, wellness, and healthy lifestyle education.
Achieving our goal requires us all to become more aware of health risks and the potential effects they have on ourselves and others, starting from before birth. We must provide and support programs that offer free or income-based fees for physical health care and mental health services, as well as programs that meet community needs for food, nutrition, wellness and fitness education, services and supports. We will promote awareness and advocacy for these outcomes.
- More than 33% of children and adolescents are overweight or obese. That’s 25 million kids and teenagers.
- Children with health coverage are better prepared to learn in school and succeed in life.1
- The number of Americans without health insurance has increased steadily since the beginning of the century, now totaling about 47 million. More than 80% are working families.2
- 8.7 million children live without health insurance – more than the total number enrolled in the first and second grades in U.S. public schools.3
1Institute of Medicine. From Neurons to Neighborhood: The Science of Early Childhood Development. Washington DC: National Academies Press, 2000.)
2Employee Benefit Research Institute estimates from the March Current Population Survey, 2007 Supplement.
3Compiled by the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC), University of Minnesota School of Public Health, using data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey 2007.