The Arkansas Joint Use Agreement (JUA) Grant Program was made possible and supported by Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe and the Arkansas tobacco excise tax created by Arkansas Act 180 of 2009. The JUA is a collaboration of the Arkansas Department of Education, Arkansas Department of Health, and ACHI. Through a competitive grant process, funds are awarded to schools to help them adopt and implement “joint use” policies and form collaborative partnerships with local community resources. These relationships allow schools and communities to maximize limited resources while increasing opportunities for physical activity. The state’s efforts are laying the ground work to advance state and local policies that increase community access to physical activity and recreation facilities outside of the regular school day.
ACHI was not only instrumental in establishing funding for this program through the increased tobacco excise tax, but also has actively participated with the JUA workgroup and in the grant review process. In the past, ACHI has coordinated media events to help expand program participation. For example, events were held in Springdale and in Cabot, and included Arkansas Education Commissioner, Dr. Tom Kimbrell, mayors, school superintendents, teachers, students and parents.
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