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The Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC) announced that as January, its popular Nature Playtimes will be sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Mexico (BCBSNM).
PEEC’s Nature Playtimes are every Monday except holidays, from 10-11 a.m. Toddlers, preschoolers and their caregivers are invited to join these free programs, which typically include a craft, story and outside activity.
The sponsorship is part of BCBSNM’s Healthy Kids, Healthy Families initiative, which works with nonprofit organizations like PEEC to improve the health status of children.
Healthy Kids, Healthy Families is part of BCBSNM’s commitment to help stem the rising tide of obesity and related chronic conditions like diabetes, to help children and their families get healthy and stay healthy.
The initiative focuses on engaging children and their families in understanding the importance of nutritious food, raising the level of physical activity, improving immunizations rates and promoting safe environments.
The program is a perfect fit with PEEC, whose mission is to enrich people’s lives by strengthening their connection with nature. Nature Playtimes is one program that targets children, getting them outside, and enjoying nature from an early age.
“We are thrilled about this new partnership,” said Katie Watson, PEEC’s executive director.
“With the generous support of BCBSNM, we are able to instill the love of nature in more children than ever. We are very appreciative that BCBSNM has joined with the American Academy of Pediatrics in recognizing the importance of nature and outdoor play to children’s health.”
Healthy Kids, Healthy Families began as a three-year initiative designed to improve the health and wellness of at least one million children through community investments by Health Care Service Corporation and its Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans in Illinois, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.
Reaching nearly three million children within the first two years, Healthy Kids, Healthy Families is now a signature program of the organization and part of an ongoing commitment to invest in and partner with nonprofit organizations that offer sustainable, measurable programs to reach children and their families in areas of nutrition, physical activity, disease prevention and management and supporting safe environments.
To learn more about Health Kids, Healthy Families, visit healthykidshealthyfamilies.org.