Speaking Up

Partners for Healthy Schools

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Farm to SchoolAs Live Well Omaha works to make Omaha the healthiest it can be, we recognize that the environments in which we study, work and play have a tremendous impact on the ability to make the healthy choice the easy choice.  While events and programs can help to encourage healthy behaviors, policy level changes are the most successful and sustainable way to make the biggest difference.  Schools looking to make policy change can look to Live Well Omaha to help. Our workshop model helps to equip schools to make lasting changes that promote health and wellness for students, staff and families.  And a menu of easily implemented policies on the subjects of physical activity, nutrition, fresh water availability, and active transportation are available, along with expert assistance and guidance.

Partners for Healthy Schools launched a pilot program during the 2013-2014 school year with four elementary schools.  Each school completed an assessment at the beginning of the process and then used their assessment to identify one goal in the area of nutrition and one goal in the area of physical activity.

Each school was asked to complete an action plan related to each of their goals.  Goals include:

  • Establish policies for food brought in for birthdays and other celebrations. (Conestoga, Fontenelle, Skinner)
  • Establish policy for regular reminders for students of the importance of physical activity and healthy snack choices. (Indian Hill, Conestoga)
  • Increasing physical activity during the school day through brain breaks and other curriculum and providing teachers with resources and training. (Indian Hill)
  • Prohibiting the removal of recess as punishment through policy, training, and alternate discipline strategies. (Indian Hill, Fontenelle, Skinner)

For more information about Partners for Healthy Schools, contact:

Madison Haugland
School Wellness Consultant
Live Well Omaha
madison@livewellomaha.org
(402) 850-9470

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Healthy Community Design

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We at Live Well Omaha recognize the strong connection between community design and health. Not only does a walkable and bikeable community provide an opportunity for residents to easily make a healthy choice, it also supports our community from an equity, economic development and talent-retention standpoint.

Nationally, a growing body of research connects the built environment with a litany of personal and public health issues such as: asthma, cancer, obesity, mental health, substance abuse, crime exposure, cardiovascular disease, and social and health inequity.  Locally, we see our community plagued by these same issues, especially in our most underserved populations.

As an organization, Live Well Omaha supports the following initiatives, recommendations and actions to help facilitate a healthy community design: 

  • The implementation of a Complete Streets policy for our city can ensure the tenets of healthy community design are integrated and institutionalized in new development and redevelopment. At its very core, such a policy is designed to make our streets and sidewalks safe for all users-whether by car, public transit, bike, stroller, wheelchair or foot.
  • Increased collaboration between local health, planning, transportation, and public works departments, as well as community-based organizations, from the early stages of community design decision-making.
  • Providing capacity support and training to government agency staff and departments on the integration of health considerations into all decisions related to community growth and redevelopment.
  • Engagement from the community on the process of design decision-making, including at the most pivotal points. Through the formation of a commission, the Mayor’s Active Living Advisory Committee, the first step is being taken. The further development of a citizens’ academy, now in its initial stages, can help residents learn more about becoming engaged in these issues.

These aren’t the only steps that lead us forward. There is much more work to be done and Live Well Omaha is proud to work with so many city, county, and community officials and stakeholders in an effort to make this city the healthiest place to live and enjoy life.

Sign up for our newsletter or digest or follow us on Twitter or Facebook to remain informed on and engaged in these vital community issues.

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Earn-a-Bike/Bike Safety Class for Refugees

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7-26-14 LFS CBPO (2)Live Well Omaha was approached by Lutheran Family Services and the Community Bike Project Omaha to help put on a earn-a-bike/bike safety class for refugees in the community. The class was held on three consecutive Saturday mornings in the Gifford Park neighborhood.

“We covered helmet fitting, ABC Quick Check, how to fix a flat, other basic bike maintenance and road riding skills,” explained Madison Haugland, LWO Active Living Coordinator. ” These skills were taught in the classroom and on bike.

7-26-14 LFS CBPOAfter completing all three classes the students got to take home a refurbished bike, helmet and bike lights. Not only do the participants have a new way to get around their city, they have the know how to do it safely.

“This is the kind of class we love teaching and hope to hold more in the future!” Haugland said.

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LWO Digest: July 31, 2014

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TWEET OF THE WEEK
If you or your organization use Twitter, please consider sending this “shout out” message:

Thanks to @LFSofNebraska @CommBikeProject for having @LiveWellOmaha help with the bicycle safety/earn-a-bike class! #HealthyOmaha

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OMAHA HEALTH SUMMIT
Live Well Omaha and Wellness Council of the Midlands invite you to the 7th annual Omaha Health Summit on October 17th at Hilton Downtown Omaha – The theme is “Achieving Healthier Futures.”

REGISTRATION OPEN
Secure your spot at the 2014 Omaha Health Summit, register today by visiting:

http://omahahealthsummit.com/register-now/

RFP DEADLINE
We’re reaching out to you to present at this year’s event. Applications due August 1st. Link here > http://goo.gl/JhBCXR

SPONSORSHIPS
Interesting in being a sponsor or vendor at this year’s summit? Visit the website for details and an application!

http://omahahealthsummit.com/sponsors/

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NEWS REPORTS
Have you seen a news report about an individual or organization making our community more healthy? Please email me the link!
OMAHA WORLD-HERALD
“10 Minutes with the Mayor: Stothert discusses eliminating bike coordinator job”

http://goo.gl/FzkDnh

LIVE WELL NEBRASKA (OMAHA WORLD-HERALD)
“Omaha bike czar’s job cut from 2015 city budget”

http://goo.gl/maa8Hj

THE ATLANTIC – CITYLAB
“The Most Persuasive Evidence Yet that Bike-Share Serves as Public Transit”

http://goo.gl/vMiqrq

WOWT Channel 6
“Grant Money Helps Teach Healthy Lessons”

http://goo.gl/PMEIOe

KIOS 91.FM
“Omaha students take peer-to-peer approach to fighting obesity”

http://kios.org/post/omaha-students-take-peer-peer-approach-fighting-obesity

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EVENT

Omaha Home for Boys’
FAMILY FUN AND SAFETY EVENT
Saturday, August 2 * 10am-1pm
When: Saturday, August 2, 2014
Where: Wurdeman Education Center
Omaha Home for Boys Campus
4343 N. 52nd

http://livewellomaha.org/omaha-home-for-boys-family-fun-safety-event/

Blue Cross Blue Shield Nebraska
2014 Health & Safety Expo
Friday September 12, 2014
11am-2pm
Stinson Park in Aksarben Village

http://livewellomaha.org/2014-health-safety-expo/

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VIDEO

TedMed – Reducing Childhood Obesity:

http://www.tedmed.com/greatchallenges/challenge/296

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LEADERSHIP OMAHA
Congrats to Live Well Omaha friends Jo Giles, Jane Meza, and Craig Moody on being selected into Leadership Omaha Class 37!

https://www.omahachamber.org/media-center/news.cfm?proc=article&CSNF_ID=432

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SPREAD THE WORD!
So many great things are happening to make Omaha a healthier community. To continue the momentum – and inspire individuals and organizations to join the movement, we share stories in this digest, our newsletter, on our website, and through social media. If your group has a story to tell (or ran across an interesting health news article), please send it our way! Here’s how:

> Submit news features for future issues of this digest, email me – anne@livewellomaha.org

> Submit 2014 events for our website at http://livewellomaha.org/event-submission/

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JOIN LIVE WELL OMAHA
Becoming a member of Live Well Omaha is an investment in your community. Please consider joining the movement! Corporate, organizational and individual memberships available. http://livewellomaha.org/join/

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To view a complete copy of this Digest on our website, go to:

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2014 Health & Safety Expo

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Blue Cross Blue Shield Nebraska
2014 Health & Safety Expo
Friday September 12, 2014
11am-2pm
Stinson Park in Aksarben Village

2014 BCBSNE Event

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Omaha Home for Boys’ Family Fun & Safety Event

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Fun and Safety Event Flyer

Fun and Safety Event Flyer

Omaha Home for Boys
FAMILY FUN AND SAFETY EVENT
Saturday, August 2 * 10am-1pm
When: Saturday, August 2, 2014
Where: Wurdeman Education Center
Omaha Home for Boys Campus
4343 N. 52nd (Omaha, NE)

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LWO Member Spotlight: MAPA

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mapaMAPA? Did you mean NAPA? What’s MAPA? One of the biggest challenges the Metropolitan Area Planning Agency (MAPA) has is explaining to people who we are and what we do. The reason – we’re a governmental agency, but we’re not part of a city, county, or state government  BUT we work directly with those levels of government in both Eastern Nebraska and Western Iowa, as well as the federal government on various projects.  Simply put, MAPA is a voluntary association of local governments that work together in the Greater Omaha-Council Bluffs region.

Think of us as the “Switzerland” of government. We’re neutral.  We convene a lot of the activities involving the regional agencies who focus on planning issues.  One of our largest efforts is Heartland 2050, a regional vision for the future of the eight-county region which makes up the Omaha-Council Bluffs Metropolitan Area and is based on the values of residents.  Heartland 2050 looks at future growth and development scenarios, but will also recommend strategies for human issues related to economic development and education.  To work on a regional scale, collaboration with other organizations is essential.  MAPA is happy to be a new member of Live Well Omaha’s Collaborating Council, which convenes many important organizations that are dedicated to improving the health of residents.

People who are familiar with MAPA may know us for work on transportation planning.  We’ve also been working with Metro Transit on a regional study on the future of alternative transportation in the region, which includes a concept for a bus rapid transit (BRT) line which would run from Westroads Mall to downtown Omaha (and perhaps someday from Elkhorn to Council Bluffs!).  We coordinate the Little Steps, Big Impact ozone awareness campaign with Metro Transit and Live Well Omaha, which works to educate people on air quality concerns in the Omaha-Council Bluffs metropolitan area and encourages riding the bus as an alternative transportation option through a discounted bus fare incentive.

It’s this program and the Heartland Commuter Challenge which led MAPA to partner with Live Well Omaha in promoting active transportation by joining forces to create one large challenge for 2014. “We saw an opportunity to coordinate our efforts and improve our outreach and participation, and it’s really paid off,” Greg Youell, MAPA Executive Director said.  Youell and Live Well Omaha Executive Director Anne Meysenburg and had talked informally in the past about combining efforts and resources, but formal coordination did not begin until mid-February 2014.  Through 2013, Live Well Omaha coordinated the Omaha area’s participation in the National Bike Challenge May 1st through September 30th while MAPA and Metro ran a month-long Heartland Commuter Challenge in August.  Now these challenges are combined into the “Live Well Omaha Commuter Challenge powered by MAPA and Metro.”

The excitement created by this new collaborative effort has spread to MAPA staff members too. In addition to the employees who exercise regularly for their personal health, several staff members participate on the MAPA team for the Live Well Omaha Commuter Challenge by walking, biking or riding the bus to work and for recreation.   Employees have participated in two group “Taco Rides” on the Wabash Trace Nature Trail this season, and MAPA has a team participating in the Corporate Cycling Challenge on August 17th.

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Two Trails Open by July 4th

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Bike trailTwo Trails Open by July 4th

 

A new section of the MOPAC hiking/biking trail built along NE Highway 31 in Sarpy County will be open in time for the Fourth of July. The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District began construction of this 4 mile crushed rock trail in October, 2013. Beginning July 4th, trail users will enjoy a safe and scenic off road pathway from Highway 50 west to the Lied Platte River Bridge. This segment is critical in meeting the vision of a MOPAC Trail extending from Omaha to Lincoln in the near future. The MOPAC Trail is named for the abandoned Missouri Pacific Railroad right-of-way on which large portions of the trail have been built.

 

“We are confident that someday soon the MOPAC will host numerous bicyclists wanting to test their cross-country trail riding skills between our state’s two most populated cities,” said John Winkler, Papio-Missouri River NRD General Manager. Eighty percent of the $2.6 million required to build this trail is being provided by Transportation Enhancement Funds available to the NRD thru the Federal Highway Administration and the NE Dept. of Roads. The remainder is being paid by the NRD.

 

Another portion of the MOPAC Trail was recently closed for maintenance and has reopened in time for the holiday. Improvements included resurfacing with crushed rock and reconstruction of bridge approaches. With these two trail openings, the MOPAC Trail now extends from Springfield south to the Platte River along NE Highway 50, then west along NE Highway 31 to the Lied Platte River Bridge – a total distance over 9 miles.

 

The Lower Platte South NRD, based in Lincoln, is constructing a trail from the City of Lincoln to the south side of the Lied Platte River Bridge. “Our two NRDs have been working together for over a decade to see this MOPAC Trail become a reality,” said Winkler.

 

The Lied Platte River Bridge opened in 2002 as the connection for future MOPAC Trails being built between Omaha and Lincoln. The resurfaced, abandoned railroad bridge features scenic Platte River overlooks considered among the finest in the state.

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LWO Digest – July 2, 2014

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TWEET OF THE WEEK
If you or your organization use Twitter, please consider sending this “shout out” message:

Thanks to @OmahaPRPP for keeping the trails clear after the recent storms, allowing people to walk, run & ride. #HealthyOmaha

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HEALTH NEWS REPORTS

(DOUGLAS COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT)
“Blood Pressure Pilot Program Becomes Permanent”

http://bit.ly/1pJhRuJ

(TIME MAGAZINE)
“The Vast Majority of Baby Boomers Are Overweight or Obese”

http://time.com/2945095/the-vast-majority-of-baby-boomers-are-overweight-or-obese/

(GREENFIELD INDIANA REPORTER)
“Lawmakers OK smoking ban in New Jersey parks, limit at beaches; bill goes to Christie”

http://bit.ly/1iVkOpf

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VIDEO

Healthy Communities Institute spotlights how Douglas County is making our CHIP process transparent and easily accessible to the community.

http://bit.ly/1onN82v

“Heartland 2050″ Transportation Video

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LITTLE STEPS. BIG IMPACT.
OZONE AWARENESS DAYS
July 1-31 (Weekdays only)
Ride the Metro bus on these days to get 50-cent fares and 25-cent transfers – plus reduce the emissions from your exhaust. It’s one of the major sources of NOx and VOCs that cause ground-level ozone. Take the first step. When you ride the Metro, you take the first step to a cleaner atmosphere and healthier breathing.

http://littlestepsbigimpact.com/what-are-ozone-awareness-days/

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SIX WAYS TO SNACK
Soon the USDA’s new Smart Snack standards take effect in schools across the country, we encourage everyone to think about swapping their snacks in other venues as well. Here are six places outside the school building where you can “swap your snack” and help both adults and children gain access to healthier snack choices.

http://bit.ly/1vawcgW

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FIREWORKS SAFETY
(National Safety Council) Fireworks Safety

http://livewellomaha.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Fireworks-tips-sheet.pdf

(Douglas County Health Department)

http://bit.ly/1o1JwjS

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YOGA IN THE PARK – JULY 6, 2014
Instructor: Lora McCarville
Live Music: Rhythm Collective
Omaha yoga lovers are kicking off their shoes for the fourth season of the weekly wellness, yoga and live music festival each Sunday 4 p.m. in Midtown Crossing’s Turner Park. Gather each week to for massage, integrative therapy exhibitions, vendor booths, organic food and drink vendors, and even more live music, along with National and local yoga teacher-lead classes for adults and children.

http://www.midtowncrossing.com/events/yoga-rocks-the-park/

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YMCA HEALTH & WELLNESS EXPO
The YMCA of Greater Omaha is presenting the YMCA Health & Wellness Expo October 3-5 at the Downtown YMCA. Although they have secured our national presenters, they are reaching out to your organization to request additional presentations. You will also receive event information in the coming weeks. Click on the link below for more information:

http://livewellomaha.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/YMCA-HW-Expo-Request-for-Presentations-2014.pdf

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BREASTFEEDING CAMPAIGN
Live Well Omaha Kids has launched a new campaign “Really? Really” – an online resource for breastfeeding facts, making smart decisions during baby’s first hour of life and the benefits of skin-to-skin contact. We think you’ll be surprised. Really! The campaign includes a new website, reallyreally.org, where campaign pieces can be accessed,downloaded and even branded for individual organizations.

http://reallyreally.org/

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OMAHA HEALTH SUMMIT
Live Well Omaha and Wellness Council of the Midlands invite you to the 7th Annual Omaha Health Summit on October 17th at Hilton Downtown Omaha – The theme is “Achieving Healthier Futures.” If you are interested or know of someone who would like to be a presenter at this year’s event, follow the link below to apply. Applications due August 1, 2014

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1__pJZsiybb66oHhoiDn6BYQ_ixr32thB8WCYAOpNt58/viewform

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LIVE WELL OMAHA COMMUTER CHALLENGE
Yes! You still can join the challenge. The goal of the Live Well Omaha Commuter Challenge is to encourage people to try active transportation. Join the challenge and track your progress from May 1 – September 30.

http://www.omahacommuterchallenge.org/

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WE CAN HELP SPREAD YOUR NEWS
Please share your news and events with us so we can help you get the word out in the community. Here’s how:

Submit 2014 events for our website at: http://livewellomaha.org/event-submission/

Submit news for future issues of this digest, email me: anne@livewellomaha.org

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JOIN THE MOVEMENT
Becoming a member of Live Well Omaha is an investment in your community. Please consider joining the movement! Corporate, organizational and individual memberships available.

http://livewellomaha.org/join/

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LWO Digest – June 25, 2014

Categories: All News
Comments: No Comments »

TWEET OF THE WEEK
If you or your organization use Twitter, please consider sending this “shout out” message:

Thanks to @OmahaPolice for helping thousands of pedestrians and bike riders safely navigate to and from this year’s #CWS #HealthyOmaha

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NEWS REPORTS

(Omaha World-Herald) “Offutt Air Force Base Valet Bike Service”
http://www.livewellnebraska.com/news/metro/offutt-air-force-base-to-offer-bike-valet-service-at/article_ceaff145-b193-5227-ae9e-a123e1052b92.html

(Omaha World-Herald) “Omaha Farmers Market plans to go year-round at spot near downtown”
http://www.omaha.com/go/omaha-farmers-market-plans-to-go-year-round-at-spot/article_4b60fc1e-fbc1-11e3-89f5-001a4bcf6878.html

(Mother Earth News) “Public Transit is a Deciding Factor for Millenials in the Workforce”
http://www.motherearthnews.com/green-transportation/millennials-in-the-workforce-zb0z1405zwea.aspx#axzz33sw1FzWv

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SAFETY
(National Safety Council) Fireworks Safety
http://livewellomaha.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Fireworks-tips-sheet.pdf

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Yoga in the Park Midtown Crossing

Omaha yoga lovers are kicking off their shoes for the fourth season of the weekly wellness, yoga and live music festival each Sunday 4 p.m. in Midtown Crossing’s Turner Park. Gather each week to for massage, integrative therapy exhibitions, vendor booths, organic food and drink vendors, and even more live music, along with National and local yoga teacher-lead classes for adults and children.
http://www.midtowncrossing.com/events/yoga-rocks-the-park/

June 29
Instructor: Ilona Holland
Live Music: Karly Jurgensen

July 6
Instructor: Lora McCarville
Live Music: Rhythm Collective

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YMCA Health & Wellness Expo

The YMCA of Greater Omaha is presenting the YMCA Health & Wellness Expo October 3-5 at the Downtown YMCA. Although they have secured our national presenters, they are reaching out to your organization to request additional presentations. You will also receive event information in the coming weeks. Click on the link below for more information:
http://livewellomaha.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/YMCA-HW-Expo-Request-for-Presentations-2014.pdf

 

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Enjoy Gardens and be Active!

Midtown Garden Walk

The Midtown Historic Neighborhood & Landmark Garden Walk is presented by The Urban Bird & Nature Society and Children’s Hospital & Medical Center. The Garden Walk will feature “real people” gardens (that’s what people said last year), stately homes, landmark homes, the net zero efficiency home, landmark building grounds, community gardens, church grounds and even the Big Muddy Urban Chicken Farm.
http://livewellomaha.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/midtown-garden-walk-postcard-EMAIL.pdf

Benson Walk Garden Walk
Enjoy the beauty of magical gardens, chat with visionary artists, stroll to the beat of your local musicians, and take part in many other special activities at each garden venue. Proceeds from the walk will go to the Omaha Parks Foundation for renovation of playground equipment for Benson area parks.
http://bensonna.wordpress.com/2014/06/19/benson-garden-walk-june-28/
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Skin to Skin: “Really? Really” Campaign

Live Well Omaha Kids has launched a new campaign “Really? Really” – an online resource for breastfeeding facts, making smart decisions during baby’s first hour of life and the benefits of skin-to-skin contact. We think you’ll be surprised. Really! The campaign includes a new website, reallyreally.org, where campaign pieces can be accessed,downloaded and even branded for individual organizations.
http://reallyreally.org/

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Live Well Omaha Health Summit

Live Well Omaha and Wellness Council of the Midlands invite you to the Seventh Annual Omaha Health Summit on October 17th at Hilton Downtown Omaha to consider the challenges and opportunities of “Achieving Healthier Futures.”
https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1__pJZsiybb66oHhoiDn6BYQ_ixr32thB8WCYAOpNt58/viewform
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Live Well Omaha Commuter Challenge

(Creighton University) “It’s not too Late: Join the Omaha Commuter Challenge TODAY!”
http://www.creightontoday.com/2014/06/10/its-not-too-late-join-the-omaha-commuter-challenge-today/
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WE CAN HELP SPREAD YOUR NEWS
Please share your news and events with us so we can help you get the word out in the community. Here’s how:

> Submit 2014 events for our website at http://livewellomaha.org/event-submission/

> Submit news for future issues of this digest, email me – anne@livewellomaha.org

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JOIN LIVE WELL OMAHA

Becoming a member of Live Well Omaha is an investment in your community. Please consider joining the movement! Corporate, organizational and individual memberships available. http://livewellomaha.org/join/
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