Delta Dental Foundation commits $100,000 to school water program
Water’s Cool at School program encourages students, staff to drink more water
As part of its Rethink Your Drink campaign, the Delta Dental Foundation today announced its newest program aimed at ensuring children drink enough water during the school day and avoid sugar-sweetened beverages.
The Delta Dental Foundation will distribute $100,000 in total to schools across Michigan that apply and are selected for the Rethink Your Drink: Water’s Cool at School program.
Schools that are selected will be able to have old drinking fountains replaced with new Elkay water fountain/bottle filling stations installed by Royal Oak-based Balfrey & Johnston. In addition, selected schools will receive reusable water bottles for all students and staff and up to $750 to design and implement a campaign to encourage students to drink more water during the school day.
“More than 50 percent of children and teens in the U.S. are not properly hydrated during the school day which can, among other things, impact cognitive function and energy levels. And when kids choose to quench their thirst with sugar-sweetened beverages such as soda pop, juice and sports drinks, this can have adverse effects on their oral and overall health,” said Teri Battaglieri, Delta Dental Foundation director.
“One 20-ounce soda pop contains nearly as much sugar as three chocolate candy bars and drinking soda pop nearly doubles the risk of cavities in children. We want to encourage students of all ages to rethink their drink and choose water at school because it’s good for their bodies, brains and teeth.”
Okemos Public Montessori at Central was the first school in the state to pilot the new program and in the first month of school saved more than 2,200 empty water bottles from going into a landfill and increased water consumption among the student body.
Michigan schools interested in applying should visit deltadentalmi.com/wateratschool
and submit their application by December 1.
About Delta Dental Foundation
The Delta Dental Foundation is a nonprofit, charitable organization established in 1980, which serves as the philanthropic arm of Delta Dental of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and North Carolina. The Foundation is dedicated to improving the oral health of the public and to advancing dental science through education and research. For more information, visit www.deltadentalmi.com