Centene Foundation and The Little Bit Foundation Partner with St. Louis CITY SC and Pro Football Hall of Fame to Enhance Health of St. Louis Students
CITY SC defender Jonathan Bell hands out care packages to students at Yeatman-Liddell Middle School during the 'Teaming Up for Healthy Futures' event on September 14.
Centene Foundation, The Little Bit Foundation (Little Bit), St. Louis CITY SC (CITY SC) and the Pro Football Hall of Fame (PFHOF) have collaborated on a partnership to support the physical, mental, and social health and well-being of St. Louis students.
A grant from the Centene Foundation will allow Little Bit to expand programs focused on providing mental health and physical fitness support, literacy services, school supplies and access to food benefiting more than 14,000 students across 47 St. Louis area schools. These programs will also address the shortage of mental health counselors and behavioral health services and offer a community support program that will bring vision services and wellness events – including inspirational speakers and martial arts training.
Building on Centene’s decade-long partnership with Little Bit, the grant will also support expansion of this programming to reach more schools in the future. Additionally, within a select number of Little Bit partner schools, the two organizations over time will create "self-care and wellness centers" to provide educators a space for relaxation that prioritizes mental health. This supports the full-service model many schools are adopting, focusing on access to food, essential items and wellness resources for families.
Keith Williamson, Centene’s Chief Charitable Giving Officer and President of the Centene Foundation, highlighted the partnership's potential: “Little Bit, an organization that deeply understands and has diligently met the needs of St. Louis public school students, is a trusted partner in our efforts to create positive impacts in our community. This new collaboration with Little Bit, and community partners like CITY SC, the PFHOF and Saint Louis Public Schools, will provide both tangible and inspirational resources for our youth.”
CITY SC and the PFHOF, along with other community partners, will participate in community programs that support health, wellness and leadership development in students. The first special event, a rally at Saint Louis Public Schools' Yeatman-Liddell Middle School on September 14, welcomed Aeneas Williams from the PFHOF and Jonathan Bell from CITY SC where they shared their experiences and insights. Additionally, some students will get a chance to attend the St Louis CITY2 match on September 17 at CITYPARK.
Left: Two students strike a pose during the rally at Yeatman-Liddell. Right: PFHOF's Aeneas Williams and CITY SC defender Jonathan Bell share a moment in a classroom at the same event on September 14.