Saucony Issues Grants To Combat Obesity

Saucony Issues Grants To Combat Obesity

Saucony and the Saucony Run for Good Foundation, established to help combat childhood obesity by providing financial support to community-based youth running programs, announced its latest round of grant winners.

This comes as the problem of childhood obesity is at last showing signs of turning the corner, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Since 2006, the Saucony Run For Good Foundation has awarded over $1 million dollars to schools and community organizations all dedicated to preventing childhood obesity through running and an active lifestyle.  Even as signs of progress in the childhood obesity fight emerge, Saucony continues to challenge runners everywhere to join the cause by logging miles on the Saucony Run4Good App.

Saucony is inviting the running community to help double the brand’s donations to the most recent  selected grant recipients by logging miles run or walked on Saucony Run4Good™, the running industry’s first-ever app dedicated to battling childhood obesity. Over the next six months (September 2013 through February 2014), the selected grant recipients will each be a monthly feature on the app. When a predetermined community mileage goal is reached during the recipient’s featured month, Saucony will double its contribution to the selected organization.

With the GPS-enabled Saucony Run4Good app, Saucony has opened the door for runners everywhere to join the fight against childhood obesity without having to enter a charity race or open their wallets. Simply by running, the Saucony Run4Good app allows people to support the cause and raise awareness about the childhood obesity epidemic.  Please visit to watch a video about the Saucony Run4Good app.

The Saucony Run4Good iPhone app can be downloaded for free from the Apple App Store. The Android version of the Saucony Run4Good app can also be downloaded for free from the Google Play Store. Links to both versions of the Saucony Run4Good app can be found at

“At Saucony, our brand mission is to inspire others to run, and more than ever, that must include our kids,” said Richie Woodworth, president of Saucony and the Saucony Run For Good Foundation Board of Directors.  “The mission of the Foundation is to improve the lives of children by further optimizing the impact and success of community organizations that inspire our kids to run. Given the issues facing our nation with childhood obesity, it’s vital that everyone does their part in increasing awareness and education,” added Woodworth.

“The problem of childhood obesity should be of great concern to everyone since it impacts so many kids today,” said Chris Lindner, chief marketing officer and senior vice president of commerce for Saucony. “We started the Saucony Run For Good Foundation seven years ago to help in the national effort to eradicate this epidemic.  As a brand focused on runners, innovation and social responsibility, we believe the Saucony Run4Good app offers a new world of possibilities to engage with our community in a relevant, innovative and meaningful way while inspiring a strong unity of purpose to make a difference for our kids.”

“Though childhood obesity rates are at last showing evidence of a decline, we still have a long way to go to effectively reverse the trend,” said Susan K. Hartman, associate publisher of Runner’s World magazine and a member of the Saucony Run For Good Board of Directors. “All of us need to take action to solve this problem. An easy way to do that is by logging your mileage on the Run4Good app. With every mile, runners earn additional contributions from Saucony for community youth running programs, putting kids back on the fast track to health.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), childhood obesity has more than tripled over the past 30 years. One of five children age 6 to 11 is now being considered obese. The numbers are even higher in African American and Hispanic communities, where nearly 40% of the children are overweight or obese. If this problem is not solved, one third of all children born in 2000 or later will suffer from diabetes at some point in their lives. Many others will face chronic obesity-related health problems like heart disease, high blood pressure, cancer, and asthma.

“On behalf of the Saucony Run For Good Foundation’s board, I am excited to announce the organizations that have been selected to receive a Run For Good grant and feel proud that these efforts will directly help combat childhood obesity,” said Woodworth.

The following six organizations have been selected to receive a Saucony Run For Good Foundation grant and will be featured on the Saucony Run4Good app during the month designated:

Lutz Elementary School, Lutz, FL (September 2013)

Every one of the nearly 600 students in the school is enrolled in the Lutz Miles Club, with 98% of the students actively running. Since the program started in December 2012, nearly 17,000 miles have been run by the students. Funding will be used for additional incentives and award levels for students, as well as running shoes for children in need.

Creekside Middle School, Patterson, CA (October 2013)
The 100 Mile Club presents Creekside students with a straightforward challenge: run, jog, or walk 100 miles over the course of the school year. It’s a big mark to hit but students of all abilities jump at the chance to score miles during designated running times before or after school, during recess, and at sanctioned community events, such as local road races and family nights. Funding will go toward incentives and awards, coaching, and a culminating event at the community stadium for students, parents and community members.

Harlandale Independent School District, San Antonio, TX (November 2013)
The goal of the HISD/Collier Elementary School is to establish a running club for grades 2 through 5 in order to address the high obesity risk within the student population. Students will be educated on safe running and stretching techniques and affordable nutrition options. The culminating activity will be the “Fruity 5K Fun Run” for participating students.

St. Vincent Healthcare Foundation, Billings, Montana (December 2013)
The SVH Foundation collaborates with Title 1 Elementary Schools in the Billings School District to deliver a year-round approach to teach children and their families ways to make active, healthy choices. Running Clubs have been established in the schools with the goal of participating in a cross country meet in the fall and a community walk/run in early summer. The RFG grant will provide needed running gear for the children in the Running Club.

Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Sonoma County, Santa Rosa, CA (January, 2014)

The RFG grant will allow the clubs in Central Sonoma County to expand the iDo 26.2 Marathon Club and Marathon Academy programs from 120 to 500 youth. Kids participate by running or walking twice a week throughout the school year to attain a full marathon distance of 26.2 miles. The Academy challenges youth to develop reading proficiency are community minded and physically fit by reading 26 books, performing 26 good deeds and completing the 26.2 miles of running.

Hi Tom:Fayetteville Public Schools, Fayetteville, AR (February, 2014)
The RFG grant will help provide Asbell Elementary School with a 200 meter long running track and related programming, including Girls on the Run and a Boys Running Club. Additionally, Saucony sponsored athlete Wallace Spearmon, a graduate of the Fayetteville Public Schools, is matching the RFG grant.

For grant applications on how the Saucony Run For Good Foundation can help local youth communities nationwide, visit