Walk to School Day Celebrates $400 Wesley Foundation Donation to AOS#96 Mileage Club Programs
October 22, 2015

On October 9, students representing the seven elementary schools in AOS #96 observed International Walk to School Day (October 7), a global event that involves communities from more than 40 countries walking and biking to school on the same day.

Escorted by teachers, Healthy Acadia staff, and parent and student volunteers, 151 students from Rose M. Gaffney walked approximately one half mile, from the corner of Court Street and Broadway, and once around the soccer field, before entering the school. The entire student body from Elm Street School in East Machias participated in Walk to School. Students were dropped off at one of two locations - behind Archibald’s One Stop and on the Rim Road - to walk the Sunrise Trail to campus. Because they do not have sidewalk routes to school, students attending schools in Machiasport, Whiting, Cutler and Jonesboro walked either inside their gymnasiums or outdoors on campus once they arrived at school.

The event also served as this year’s kick off for the AOS #96 Mileage Club Program, and adaptation of Fitness Finders’ Feelin’ Good Mileage Club, an elementary school exercise program adopted by schools throughout North America. Participating students walk a pre-measured, quarter-mile route on their school campus and record their progress on their Mileage Marker cards. Once a student has logged 5 miles, he/she will receive a necklace with a Toe Token (brightly colored plastic foot). For each subsequent five miles walked, students will receive an additional Toe Token to add to their necklace. The program can help students burn off excess energy, improve school performance, build self-esteem, and motivate them to incorporate exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle throughout their lives.

Thanks to a generous $400 donation from the Wesley Family Foundation, AOS #96 was able to purchase Mileage Club program materials – including Mileage Marker tracking cards, Toe Token rewards, posters and certificates - for participating students attending four district schools. Parent Teacher Organizations have purchased Mileage Club materials for the remaining three schools in the district.

Terri Woodruff, Community Health Program Manager with Healthy Acadia, works with schools in AOS #96 and throughout Washington County to develop and implement school wellness policies that focus on healthy eating, physical activity, and substance misuse prevention. For more information, please call Terri at 255-3741, email terri@healthyacadia.org or visit: www.healthyacadia.org