In November the greater La Crosse community nominated youth, individuals and organizations to be recognized as Healthy Living Heroes for their efforts to make La Crosse County a healthier place to live, learn, work and play. The review committee selected the following recipients:
Youth Award Winner: 7 Rivers Students
This group of young individuals completed a project to help the homeless. They partnered with local agencies and individuals to host a fundraiser which included a soup and dessert cook-in. All collected funds were used to provide the homeless community with individual care packages including gift cards for local businesses and warm clothing items among other necessities.
Individual Honorable Mention: Tyler Heinz
Tyler’s big heart, entrepreneurial mindset and personal vision have helped to create a series of events that allow people of all ages and abilities to improve their health through running. Tyler and his staff at Grand Bluff Running have created free runs, training groups and post-run celebrations for people of any ability.
Individual Award Winner: Linda Riddle
In her position as Member Service Coordinator at the People’s Food Co-op, she creates classes and events that empower people of the La Crosse community regarding health and wellness. Linda views access to nutritious food as a critical element to a just society. She prioritizes working with people who are often left out of the “healthy food” conversation.
Organization Honorable Mention: WisCorps
This non-profit organization makes such an impact on not only the La Crosse community but on communities around the state and beyond. Offering a real life work experience for young adults centered on conservation and obtaining lifelong skills, WisCorps makes its mark not only in the community but for the individuals involved.
Organization Award Winner: Pioneering Healthier Communities
This group of dedicated individuals has done an immense amount of work to improve La Crosse and the surrounding communities in a variety of ways. As a community based coalition, they set their aim high and made strides in healthy eating and physical activity, through educational opportunities, working with local businesses and conducting assessments with pedestrians and cyclists in mind.
Healthy Living Heroes were awarded at the annual January meeting with plaques and a hot, healthy breakfast on January 12 at the Myrick Park Center. Formed in 2009, the Healthy Living Collaboration has taken charge of bringing together groups that work to promote nutrition, physical activity, and tobacco-free living; three behaviors that are major contributors to chronic disease and premature deaths among La Crosse County residents.