By Genevieve Jinson, Community Reporter
Jamie Terry, the Northborough board of health (BOH) agent, submitted the application on behalf of the town. She explained to the board that the application stressed that the children are “the treasure and responsibility of the entire Northborough community.”
The funds will be used to continue to promote the town's “Building a Healthy Northborough” program. Specifically, that program is targeted towards combating childhood obesity, helping to promote physical activity, and working with local restaurants to offer healthier menu options.
The town previously received grants from the MetroWest Community Healthcare Foundation in 2008, 2010 and 2011.
“Those [grants] have allowed us to make major strides in beginning to address these complex issues,” she said.
With the new grant, Terry said the Northborough BOH plans on creating a website and posting signs in different parts of the town to help promote the value of exercising. The department also plans to hold a strategic meeting to engage residents and officials in discussing additional healthy initiatives for the town.
The BOH will continue an initiative that helps to promote healthy menu options at local food establishments. The newsletter “Building a Healthy Northborough” will continue to be distributed at all elementary schools, the town library, town hall and the senior center. It will also help to promote, support and maintain community gardens located on Valentine Road.
Eight Northborough food establishments also received awards at the meeting for identifying healthy options on their menus. Those restaurants had taken part in the “Building a Healthy Northborough: Restaurant Initiative Challenge.”
Restaurants that received awards included: Dunkin” Donuts, the Bistro at the Senior Center, LalaJava, Monti's Pizza, Pickle House Deli, Texas Barbecue, Wegmans, and International House of Pancakes (which has not yet opened its Northborough location at 4102 Shops Way.)
Eight additional restaurants are in the process of creating menu items or identifying existing items that meet the criterion as healthy menu options, Terry said.