Application period open for Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs

August 15, 2013

The Jackson County Community Health Action Team (JCCHAT) announced today the application process for Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs is open and want to encourage those in the area that qualify to apply for recognition in helping make Oklahoma a healthier place to live.

A crucial factor to improving the health of Oklahomans is providing a myriad of opportunities for the state’s residents to make healthier choices where they live, work, learn and play. The Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs meet this challenge by recognizing those communities, schools, businesses, campuses and restaurants that encourage health-focused behaviors and policies.

“The Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs provide opportunities for Jackson County’s businesses, restaurants, schools, communities, and campuses to create environments that support health policies and individual health decisions that ultimately will improve Oklahoma’s health outcomes,” said Haley Rinkenbaugh, JCCHAT Nutrition & Fitness Task Force Chair. “We encourage potential applicants to consider what they are doing to make the healthy choice the easy choice for their employees, customers, students, and citizens, and submit an application for Certified Healthy Oklahoma certification.”

Applications are now being accepted for the Certified Healthy Oklahoma’s five categories of certification:

• The Certified Healthy Business program recognizes workplaces that provide health and wellness opportunities for their employees.

• The Certified Healthy Restaurant program recognizes restaurants that provide healthy food options to their customers.

• The Certified Healthy School program recognizes schools that are teaching students and staff how to be healthy.

• The Certified Healthy Community program recognizes communities that offer citizens a healthy place to live, work, learn and play.

• The Certified Healthy Campus program recognizes colleges and Career Technology Centers that provide a healthy environment for faculty and students.

Each program has three levels of certification: Basic, Merit and Excellence. Applications must be submitted by Nov. 1, 2013, for certification consideration. Award winners will be notified in December 2013 and acknowledged at an awards ceremony in Oklahoma City on Feb. 5, 2014.

“Another great reason for communities and schools to apply is that they must be “certified” through this program to be eligible to apply for the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) Healthy Incentive Grants in 2014,” said Karen Weaver, Administrator for Jackson County Health Department. “The TSET Healthy Incentive Grants keep the momentum going in our communities and schools to expand opportunities to live healthier lives.”

The Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs are a joint effort of the Oklahoma State Department of Health, The State Chamber, The Oklahoma Academy, Oklahoma Turning Point Council, and numerous other partners who are helping to shape a healthier future for Oklahoma. Last year, more than 750 applicants received certification.

Criteria details and application information for all Certified Healthy Oklahoma programs are now available on the Oklahoma Turning Point Council website at More information on the TSET Healthy Incentive Grants for communities and schools will be released later this year.

For local information or assistance with the application process, contact: Julie Ketelsen at 580-482-7308.