School & Community News

Celebrating our 2018 successes and a look ahead
January 2, 2019

A message from the executive director

January 2019 … We are grateful almost beyond words for the support Healthy NewsWorks received during 2018 from our schools and the community.

Perhaps the giant, colorful card I received recently from 25 fifth graders at one of our schools says it best:

  • “Thank you for teaching me how to be a reporter. It has made my writing better.”
  • “Thank you for everything you taught me. It was fun.”
  • “Thank you for bringing something great to our school.”

There were many bright spots for our program during 2018. In March, Healthy NewsWorks began operating as an independent nonprofit organization after graduating from our fiscal sponsor of the past several years.

Other highlights included:

  • We published our seventh book, Leading Healthy Change In Our Communities 2018, which we celebrated with many of the student authors, health leaders, and community members in May.
  • During the summer and fall, we were honored to receive a GSK Impact Award and to be selected as a finalist for the Be Well Philly Health Hero Challenge along with several other remarkable nonprofit organizations in the region.
  • And now, as 2019 begins, we have just closed the books on a successful fall fundraising campaign, capped by an outpouring of gifts that surpassed a $4,000 matching gift challenge from our board. Thank you to all the donors and board members who contributed!

Backed by this tremendous support, we are teaching about 700 students in grades K to 8 about fact-based health reporting this school year. We’re currently in 14 Philadelphia and Norristown schools and expect to add a 15th school in coming weeks.

About 100 of our reporters this month will start interviewing health leaders in the Philadelphia area for our eighth book, Leading Healthy Change in Our Communities 2019, which will have a special focus on health and the environment. Save the date for our book launch, which is scheduled from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, May 29, at the Merion Tribute House, 625 Hazelhurst Ave., Merion Station, PA 19066.

Also, beyond our core student reporter teams, more than 400 additional students in Healthy NewsWorks schools will experience at least one special lesson this year focused on web-based research, nutrition education, or journalism skills. And we are developing the tools and resources to reach more students and schools.

This work is only possible because of the support of many individuals and households, companies, organizations, and foundations, and the dedication of the teachers, students, and volunteers who work in the schools.

Thank you for being part of it. We’re looking forward to a terrific 2019!

Marian Uhlman
Executive Director

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Since 2003, Healthy NewsWorks has been empowering elementary and middle school students to become researchers, writers, and confident communicators who advance health understanding and literacy through their factual publications and digital media.