(LOUISVILLE, Ky - August 1, 2019) Carolyn Richey, a nurse supervisor with the Allen County Health Department, has been named a Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky for her work to increase access to healthy foods for youth. The award recognizes individuals and organizations working to improve the health of Kentuckians through policy change.
As a signature project during her nearly 30 years at the health department, Richey has turned the student "veggie tasting" pilot program she launched into a model for an integrated farm-to-school program. She organized the Community Health Action Team (CHAT), bringing together representatives of the health department, schools, extension, library, chamber, rotary club and other organizations to address food access issues and the farm-to-school program grew out of that collaboration.
"Carolyn has created and nourished many collaborative partnerships, applied for and won several grants, and established extensive health education programming along the way," said Foundation CEO Ben Chandler, who presented July 24 the award at Need More Acres Farm in Scottsville. The farm is an important element of the farm-to-school program and was the location of a Foundation workshop on healthy food access.
Richey was nominated by Michelle Howell, co-owner of Need More Acres Farm, who said that Richey's efforts "have increased the consumption of fruits and vegetables as well as raised awareness of the local farming community."
The programs Richey launched "provide numerous healthy food options for kids not only during the school year but also during the summer at multiple community locations," said Melanie Harston, her co-worker at the health department.
Richey is now eligible for the Gil Friedell Health Policy Champion award, which comes with a $5,000 grant from the Foundation to a Kentucky-based nonprofit of the winner's choice. That winner of that award will be announced on Sept. 24 at the Foundation's Howard L. Bost Memorial Health Policy Forum in Lexington. Nominations for the Healthy Kentucky Policy Champion Award are accepted at any time. See details on the Foundation's website.
About the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky
Funded by an endowment, the mission of the nonpartisan Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky is to address the unmet health needs of Kentuckians by developing and influencing policy, improving access to care, reducing health risks and disparities, and promoting health equity. Since the Foundation opened its doors in 2001, it has invested more than $27 million in health policy research, advocacy, and demonstration project grants across the Commonwealth Follow the Foundation on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, and visit our website at www.healthy-ky.org.
Bonnie J. Hackbarth