DREXEL HILL, PA – Ray Gaddis, defender for the Philadelphia Union soccer team, recently visited students at Primos Elementary School to help celebrate the Crozer-Keystone Passport to Health Program’s 10th year of educating Delaware County’s youth on better health habits. Passport to Health’s mission is to educate and reinforce the importance of good health behaviors and disease prevention to 3rd, 4th and 5th graders.
For the 2014-2015 school year, approximately 5,000 students from 25 schools in Delaware County participated in the program. Each month from September to May, schools receive an activity packet that includes information and kid-friendly worksheets on health topics. The curriculum this year covered genetics, dental health, bullying, tobacco prevention, germ prevention, exercise, heart health, nutrition, sun safety and skin cancer dangers, and bike and car safety. The packets are competed during downtime or gone over along with the health curriculum. Crozer-Keystone clinicians also come out to the schools to provide additional education to students.
At the end of the school year, the program provides a pizza party to commend the students for their hard work. This year, Gaddis visited the students of Primos Elementary for photo ops and to answer questions. The kids were ecstatic to meet him and learn more about life as a professional soccer player.
Debbie Simon, director of Healthline Services at Delaware County Memorial Hospital and program facilitator, has a positive outlook for its future. “Over the past ten years, the program has grown from 500 kids a year to 5,000. The number of schools we serve varies each year, but we hope to expand our reach into more areas,” she says.
“It is a really good feeling to meet some of the students at the end of the year and see how much they have learned from the program. We want to instill good healthy habits in them early so they can carry these habits with them into the future,” Simon says.
Photo Caption: Ray Gaddis, defender for the Philadelphia Union, visited students from Primos Elementary at the end of the school year.