Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Strong4Life Selected as CDC SPAN Grant Collaborating Partner in Statewide Efforts to Transform Childhood Health

ATLANTA (Feb 15, 2024) – Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Strong4Life is proud to announce that it is one of five collaborators funded by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) State Physical Activity and Nutrition (SPAN) grant program. SPAN focuses on promoting healthier lifestyles and addressing health disparities related to poor nutrition, physical inactivity and obesity.

“Children’s is honored to collaborate alongside Georgia Health Policy Center, Quality Care for Children, Wholesome Wave Georgia and the Georgia Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, to further our collective impact on child health,” says Marc Welsh, vice president of child advocacy and chief diversity officer at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. “Over the past decade we have strengthened our community prevention model and increased our programs, trainings and resources to reach families with evidence-based nutrition and physical activity efforts to impact families and kids where they live, learn and play."

As part of this five-year grant, Strong4Life will collaborate with Wholesome Wave Georgia to lead the nutrition working group focused on expanding access to fruits and vegetables and promoting healthy food choices via nutrition guidelines in community settings. Strong4Life is well-positioned to strengthen these efforts due to the extensive network of community collaborators working to impact obesity in Georgia.

Strong4Life will support communities and collaborating partners with the following strategies:

  • Assist early care and education settings in improving nutrition and physical activity and supporting breastfeeding.
  • Make healthy food choices easier everywhere by promoting food service and nutrition guidelines and expanding fruit and vegetable voucher incentives and produce prescription programs.
  • Provide safe and accessible physical activity by connecting pedestrian, bicycle or transit transportation networks to everyday destinations.
  • Expand continuity of care in breastfeeding support by collaborating with partners to implement breastfeeding-friendly policies and practices.

“All kids deserve to experience the benefits of regular physical activity and healthy eating, but that’s only possible if we prioritize equal access to healthy opportunities and habits,” says Welsh. “This grant allows us to reach more counties across the state, so kids throughout Georgia can grow into safe, healthy and resilient adults.”

For more about the CDC SPAN grant, awarded to 17 other states, please visit:

About Children's Healthcare of Atlanta's Strong4Life

From birth through school-age, Strong4Life helps parents with everything from bedtime battles and mealtime tantrums, to food parenting, picky eating, and everything in between. How? With easy-to-try tips, facts and advice from our doctors, registered dietitians and wellness experts-- who are parents, too. The Strong4Life movement focuses on equipping parents with the resources they need at home, training healthcare providers and working with schools and community to impact kids where they learn and play. Visit for more information.

About Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta

As the only freestanding pediatric healthcare system in Georgia, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta is the trusted leader in caring for kids. The not-for-profit organization’s mission is to make kids better today and healthier tomorrow through more than 60 pediatric specialties and programs, top healthcare professionals, and leading research and technology. Children’s is one of the largest pediatric clinical care providers in the country, managing more than one million patient visits annually at three hospitals, Marcus Autism Center, the Center for Advanced Pediatrics, urgent care centers and neighborhood locations. Consistently ranked among the top children’s hospitals by U.S. News & World Report, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta has impacted the lives of kids in Georgia, across the United States and around the world for more than 100 years thanks to generous support from the community.

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