MINNEAPOLIS, MN – The Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee (MNSBHC) Legacy Fund today awarded a $50,000 grant to Bolder Options, a nonprofit focused on healthy youth development through one-on-one mentoring. The grant will support the organization’s wellness-based youth mentoring program for kids ages 10-14 through its “Put Super Food in Your Bowl” project, funding building infrastructure repairs, purchasing kitchen and garden supplies and replacing an aging van.
The grant is part of the Super Bowl Legacy Grant Program, which is made possible each year by a $1 million contribution courtesy of the NFL Foundation and is complemented by the Super Bowl Host Committee. Through its 52 Weeks of Giving campaign, the MNSBHC has launched a year-long effort to make Super Bowl LII a statewide event by awarding 52 communities with grants that will help improve the health and wellness of young people in Minnesota.
The “Put Super Food in Your Bowl” project grant funds will repair two kitchens, used for large-group cooking classes and Family Cooking Night activities; support the purchase of a used 15-passenger van for transporting youth and their families; fund supplies for Bolder Options’ Youth Garden and kitchen equipment for cooking classes; and enable the purchase of iPads for program participants to complete evaluation surveys tracking progress toward health goals.
All of these activities are part of Bolder Options’ one-on-one mentoring program, in which more than 150 kids meet weekly with a mentor for one year, working toward academic, physical health and social/emotional health goals. Each mentor and young person pair trains and competes in three running or biking races and participates in monthly nutrition and healthy cooking workshops.
“For more than 24 years, we’ve worked to improve the lives of community youth through wellness-based mentoring,” said Darrell Thompson, president, Bolder Options. “As the importance of a healthy diet has become more widely recognized, our commitment to this work has only strengthened. That’s why we’re grateful to the Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee for supporting our work to help kids achieve all of their health goals.”
Representatives of the Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee Legacy Fund, mayor-elect Jacob Frey, Bolder Options youth and mentors and community members gathered today to celebrate the grant at a special dedication event. The event included a brief program followed by four rotating activity modules – Fun Run, Financial Literacy, Nutrition Station and Cyber Security – for attending children and community members.
Two of the Bolder Options youth participants in attendance were Isaiah and Zaevion Henderson. The half-brothers were featured as part of an online website that shared how the Hendersons found comfort in football after experiencing personal tragedies. The NFL was aware of the brothers’ story and at a Vikings game earlier this year, the boys – and their whole youth football team – were surprised with tickets to Super Bowl 52.
“Positive role models, such as those in Bolder Options’ one-on-one youth mentoring program, are vital to improving outcomes for the children in our communities,” said Dana Nelson, Vice President of Legacy and Community Partnerships, MNSBHC. “We’re thrilled to support the critical work of Bolder Options through our 52 Weeks of Giving campaign, helping children establish lifelong healthy habits.”
The Minnesota Super Bowl Host Committee is a private, non-profit corporation formed to plan and execute Super Bowl LII. For more information visit www.mnsuperbowl.com and follow @mnsuperbowl2018 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.