Buffalo, NY – Buffalo Bills wide receiver James Hardy, tight end Robert Royal, and safeties Donte Whitner and George Wilson will join forces with United Way to celebrate the tenth annual Hometown Huddle at Southside Elementary School in Buffalo at 3:30 p.m. today. The event brings together Buffalo Bills players and children through a national partnership between the NFL and United Way.
This year's local Hometown Huddle event includes a partnership with HOPSports, a unique, technology-driven training system designed to improve the health and vitality of America's youth. The HOPSports Training System combines the best aspects of technology, training, and entertainment to encourage movement, educate youth on energy and nutrition while delivering important societal messages.
Over 150 elementary students and several Buffalo Bills players will be at the event and ready to work up a sweat and have fun at the same time. Arlene Kaukus, United Way of Buffalo & Erie County president, will kick off the event with a few words of wisdom to the youngsters about staying active in our community. Kirk Alger, HOPSports head trainer, will then lead the whole group in Buffalo's very first HOPSports lesson.
The NFL/United Way Hometown Huddle provides NFL players and coaches with the opportunity to take part in a variety of community-service activities. Each fall, every NFL franchise hosts a local Hometown Huddle event in partnership with its local United Way. Started in 1999, Hometown Huddle continues to help make a difference in communities across the country.
In 2007, the NFL launched a national youth health and fitness campaign designed to tackle childhood obesity. NFL Play 60 focuses on the health and wellness of young fans by encouraging them to be active for at least 60 minutes a day. Since the program was launched last year, the NFL has committed $90 million to youth health and fitness through programming, grants, and public service announcements.
"Our players recognize the value of staying healthy and it's important that young fans also understand the benefits of exercise," said Roger Goodell, NFL commissioner. "PLAY 60 is a significant tool ensuring children get their necessary daily physical activity."
Encouraging physical activity is also an important part of United Way's work, which focuses on the areas of education, income and wellness. "We're focused on making sure every child has a good education, every family is financially stable and independent, and all people are well and connected," said Arlene Kaukus. "Working with the Buffalo Bills to help kids be healthy and active is a terrific opportunity for us to reinforce that work." The Buffalo Bills and United Way hope that this event will help the community focus on improving the health and fitness of our youth.
For more information, visit http://www.uwbec.org