In 2008, with the support of the Highmark Foundation, George Junior Republic began the “Change My Life” program. “Change My Life” was a component of the Healthy High Five Initiative that focused on wellness, self-esteem, and nutrition to improve adolescent health. The program educated youth on the importance of implementing healthy behaviors into their lives and provided dramatic results for its participants. Based on the success of “Change My Life,” a team of clinical and program staff decided to expand the health and nutrition program with the goal of training and educating youth on the necessity of maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
In 2012, again with the support of the Highmark Foundation, the expanded program became known as Pointing Adolescents Toward Health.
What is the PATH program?
- The goal of the PATH program is to help each youth maximize his personal chance for success by developing a healthy lifestyle
- Youth are selected for the PATH program based on a body fat analysis of greater than 30 percent
- Youth are then assigned to teams that include a personal trainer, registered nurse, and recreation and outdoor adventure staff to engage and support them throughout the program
- Youth are placed in one of three PATH groups and meet five days per week for a total of 20 weeks
- Each session lasts one hour and includes an educational component
Healthy Lifestyle Leadership Program
Focused on reaching more youth, George Junior Republic expanded the PATH program in 2014 and now engages youth in the Healthy Lifestyle Leadership Program. Today, with the support of the Highmark Foundation, healthy lifestyle and physical education continue to be a vital component of the unique services that George Junior Republic provides. The Healthy Lifestyle Leadership Program is a comprehensive wellness initiative that focuses on nutrition and lifestyle changes for youth at George Junior Republic. Our mission, to treat the whole person, includes not only modifying delinquent behavior and teaching at risk youth to become responsible adults, but also helping them learn to make the best possible lifestyle and health choices once they leave George Junior Republic.