Fun, Fly, & Fit
Fun, Fly & Fit is an acclaimed, results-focused program that motivates children to play, exercise and have fun. Developed by United Way of the National Capital Area, Fun Fly & Fit has scored remarkable successes throughout Metropolitan Washington. Its goal is simple yet powerful: To get kids so jazzed about physical fitness and nutrition that their attitudes and behaviors soar.
As public health officials warn that one in three American children is now overweight or obese, United Way of the National Capital Area offers an exciting youth fitness program with a solid track record in reshaping attitudes and behaviors. Fun Fly & Fit is a thoughtful, evidence-based response to the national epidemic of childhood obesity.
Fun Fly & Fit is accessible to all communities because it's self-sustaining and adaptable. Fun Fly & Fit has been successfully implemented in more than 50 schools and other program venues. It is now in more than 60 sites across the greater Washington region. It can easily be implemented as an in-school program or in after school sites.
The mission of Fun, Fly & Fit to provide a solid foundation for children to make the right life choices to keep them healthy, have fun, and improve their self-image. To do that, we will:
- encourage children to have fun through fitness,
- educate children and adults about nutrition and healthy eating, and
- provide program sites with tools and incentives to keep the program going.
Including parents, caregivers, teachers and other individuals who are able to reach and influence children is a key part of achieving success.
Started in 2009, Fun, Fly & Fit began with a pilot program in seven D.C. schools. The plan was simple yet innovative. Get to kids where they are, at their schools, and get them moving.
Over the next year we launched 18 new sites in the District of Columbia, Prince George’s County, MD and Loudoun County, VA and began creating a lot of buzz around the community. BET partnered with United Way NCA to include Fun, Fly & Fit in their first Girls Health Summit. Washington Redskins defensive end André Carter and his wife Bethany promoted the program, even leading a group of kids through an NFL-style workout. The following year the Redskins linked up again with Fun, Fly & Fit as part of the national NFL-United Way partnership, Hometown Huddle, bringing players to eight program sites to exercise with the kids.
As the program got more notice, it increased in demand. In the summer of 2010 the DC Department of Health gave a huge endorsement by providing a two-year grant and selecting Fun, Fly & Fit as the fitness program for eight DC recreation centers. In its second year, Fun, Fly & Fit was in 55 sites in DC and Northern Virginia and had added an assembly program to inspire even more children to live healthy, reaching more than 10,000 elementary school students.
Now in its second year, we’ve made it easy for schools, after school programs or other youth centers to help kids get healthy. Fun, Fly & Fit now employs a train-the-trainer format, allowing staff or volunteers to implement the program themselves. Plus, United Way NCA provides all the equipment and the training.
- Program launch >>
- André Carter workout >>
- BET Girls Health Summit >>
- Bounce Around Assembly Launch >>
- Nickelodeon’s Worldwide Day of Play >>
Fun, Fly & Fit would not be possible without the support of our partners. United, we can help improve the health of kids around the national capital area.
Signature Partner and Website Sponsor
Kaiser Permanente of the Mid-Atlantic States
Financial supporters and site sponsors
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority (Washington DC Alumnae Chapter)
District of Columbia Department of Health
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority (Xi Omega Alumnae Chapter)
Metropolitan Police Department
Essence of Fitness
Nu-You Wellness and Fitness
Essence of Fitness
To find out how you can sponsor Fun, Fly & Fit, please contact Stacia Klim.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Fun, Fly & Fit?
Fun, Fly & Fit is an acclaimed, results focused program that motivates children to play, exercise and have fun. Developed by United Way of the National Capital Area, Fun Fly & Fit has scored remarkable successes throughout Metropolitan Washington. The goal is simple yet powerful: to get kids so jazzed about physical fitness and nutrition that their attitudes and behaviors soar.
What is the target age Fun, Fly & Fit is trying to reach?
Fun, Fly & Fit is geared toward elementary school age children, specifically pre-K through fifth graders. This is a great age to begin getting kids on-track for healthy choices.
What is the goal of the program?
The goal of Fun, Fly & Fit is to create fundamental shift in the way children, and their caregivers, think about health and wellness.
Who can run Fun, Fly & Fit?
Fun, Fly & Fit can be adopted by schools, afterschool program sites, community centers or any organization that works with elementary-school-age kids. The program capacity is limited only by the available financial resources we receive and we continue to generate new support from companies, individuals, government and civic organizations.
Why is this such an important issue?
The latest data show that nationally, 1 out of every 6 children is obese and almost 1 in 3 is overweight. In parts of our region that rate is even higher. It’s no secret that kids who are healthy have more energy, but they also perform better at school.
Kids that develop healthy habits are less likely to smoke or do drugs and are more likely to engage in positive activities. Developing wholesome habits early on sets kids up for a lifetime of healthy living.
How did United Way NCA come to take up this particular cause?
United Way of the National Capital Area is evolving into a more hands-on problem solver, adding impact driven programs to help improve our community. We worked with local leaders to identify childhood obesity and youth fitness as a major issue in our region. We then collaborated with experts in fitness, education and nutrition to offer Fun, Fly & Fit as a robust and effective initiative to combat this crisis.
Fun, Fly & Fit has been running now for almost three years. How has it been received?
The response has been tremendous. We ran the program in 9 sites in our first year, reaching over 250 kids and their families. The kids, their parents and the host sites all love the program. Since then demand has been tremendous. We have run the program in more than 30 schools and youth centers and are currently running in more than 50 new sites around greater Washington.
A really exciting development, the DC Department of Health has provided a 2 year grant to adopt Fun, Fly & Fit in ten Parks and Recreation sites, which is a great endorsement for the program.
What are people saying about Fun, Fly & Fit?
Teachers are saying that when the kids come back to class the day after one of their workout session, Fun, Fly & Fit is all they talk about.
Parents and teachers are involved every step of the way and are a big part of making a positive transformation for the kids. It’s rewarding for them too.
Is the program generating results?
The immediate impact is really promising. The kids are definitely getting excited about exercise, and their post program assessment show many have lost weight, gained strength and endurance and understand more about nutrition.
More importantly, they are learning that health is accessible, easy and fun!
What is Bounce Around with Fun, Fly & Fit?
Bounce Around with Fun, Fly and Fit is our school assembly program. Offered in the fall to give potential sites a sense of what the program is all about, it’s a super-charged, heart pumping interactive assembly that gets kids excited about being health. Dancers, acrobats and other healthy role-models show the kids that keeping fit can be fun.
Do sites have to pay to get Fun, Fly & Fit?
Fun, Fly & Fit is funded by grants and sponsorships from private and public funding sources. The availability of the program to sites is contingent on the available funding and the specifications of the grant agreements. Contact United Way NCA to see if the program is available.
How can I get Fun, Fly & Fit to my school or youth center?
Parents can advocate at their kids’ schools or afterschool programs to adopt the program.