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One Young Man’s Story Illustrates the Power of Healthy School Environments to Transform Lives

Catherine is a senior communications professional helping social change organizations tell their story in powerful ways. She has expertise in public health, environmental stewardship, philanthropy and education. Follow her on Twitter @CatBrozena

Albert Gonzales is a seventh grader at Loma Vista Middle School in Riverside, Calif., who found the strength and determination to work at becoming healthy and fit.

When he joined the running club at LVMS, Albert found much more than fitness. He discovered a positive sense of self, accomplishment and new values around well-being. Not just for himself, but also for his family.

While this may seem like the story of one young man, it’s actually a much bigger story. It’s the story of how one school with dedicated teachers, coaches, and staff can make a positive, lasting impact on their students’ lives. LVMS is such a school, and it promotes a culture of good health, better nutrition, and access too physical activity to improve the lives of teachers, staff, students and their families.

The video below traces Albert’s journey from understanding the need for change to making a commitment to stand for health. It also highlights the crucial roles our schools can play in promoting good health in our communities.

LVMS is keenly aware of the positive impact student physical fitness has on academic and social development. The school was named both the “Middle School of the Year” and a winner of the Fitness Challenge by the California Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness in 2011. Their award-winning physical education department integrates physical fitness and nutrition into the daily lives of their teachers, staff, students and their families.

Learn more about Albert Gonzales and Loma Vista Middle School.

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