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Nutrition Standards in Early Childhood Setting

Ensure that childcare centers in TCI priority areas promote proper nutrition and developmentally appropriate practices.

IPHI and School Readiness Consulting conducted a formative assessment among family childcare providers, county leadership, and nonprofits to identify the appropriate policy, system, and environmental change needed to support compliance with Maryland’s Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Act. Reports with assessment results can be found below.

Download (pdf): Healthy Family Child Care Environments in Montgomery County: Supporting Best Practices for Nutrition, Physical Activity and Breastfeeding


Safe Routes to School (SRTS)

Students, teachers, and staff at Gaithersburg Elementary School in Montgomery County participated in the National Walk to School Day in October 2019.

Increase the number of students in priority communities who walk or bike to school.

The SRTS strategy increased the number of Montgomery County students who walk or bike to school. The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) performed a walkability audit of all Montgomery County public schools to ensure students in the walk zone have a safe way to walk or bike to school. Through a partnership with MCDOT, TCI assessed SRTS within the county. Additionally, TCI collaborated with the MDCOT to develop and promote user-friendly SRTS maps for schools; increase the number of SRTS bicycle and pedestrian educational and safety trainings in priority ZIP codes; and increase collaboration for sustainability between Montgomery County Public Schools and the Department of Transportation for future SRTS programming.

Healthy Food Access

Reduce food insecurity in Montgomery County by creating system-level changes in coordinating and delivering food assistance resources and increasing access to healthy food for our most vulnerable communities. 

In April 2017, IPHI released a Request for Proposals to facilitate community-based approaches to the TCI strategy areas. Primary Care Coalition (PCC) and the Montgomery County Food Council (MCFC) were awarded funding to implement innovative approaches to community-based food access.

PCC and a group of community partners implemented “Food is Medicine,” a systems approach to food security screening and referral between safety-net health care clinics and food and nutrition service providers. MCFC funding supported the implementation of the Montgomery County Food Security Plan, including the creation of new training and resources for food assistance organizations, the identification of gaps in services, increased outreach and communication, and the conduct of food security data collection and evaluation.

School Health and Wellness (Local School Wellness Councils)

Create and maintain healthy school environments by increasing school wellness policy implementation by forming local school wellness councils (LSWC).

Montgomery County Public School staff worked closely with IPHI’s School Wellness Coordinator to implement LSWCs with support from the University of Maryland Extension, Maryland State Department of Education, and School Workgroup Steering Committee. By 2020, there were 110 LSWCs established in Montgomery County Public Schools, many of which received mini-grant funding to support student access to healthy foods, nutrition education, increase physical activity, develop school gardens, and enhance initiatives to support mental health.

Promoting Tobacco-Free Living (Tobacco 21)

Increase the minimum legal sales age for tobacco products to 21 years of age to reduce tobacco use among youth and young adults.

The American Cancer SocietyTobacco-Free Kids, the American Lung Association, and the American Heart Association, among other local and national organizations, formed the Maryland Tobacco 21 campaign. In October 2019, the campaign successfully advocated for Tobacco 21 legislation that increased the minimum legal sales age for tobacco products to 21 to reduce tobacco use among youth and young adults. The Tobacco 21 strategy included a social media campaign and educational materials to recruit and mobilize youth as legislative champions.

The Prince George’s County Food Equity Council Launches New Food Recovery Platform to Fight Hunger and Reduce Food Waste


Media Contacts:
Julia Groenfeldt, [email protected]

The Prince George’s County Food Equity Council Launches New Food Recovery Platform to Fight Hunger and Reduce Food Waste

PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY, MD — The Prince George’s Food Equity Council (FEC), an initiative of the Institute for Public Health Innovation (IPHI) has joined the Food Rescue US network to launch the Food Rescue US platform in Prince George’s County. The county’s food recovery efforts will be coordinated by FEC staff and funding from the Greater Washington Community Foundation and Philip L. Graham Fund. 

Food Rescue US, a national nonprofit organization, is a leader in food rescue operations. Since 2011, Food Rescue US has helped launch food recovery communities in 39 locations across the country, providing more than 56 million meals and keeping over 75 million pounds of food out of landfills. Through the use of its proprietary software, Food Rescue US provides the platform for volunteer food rescuers to directly transfer excess food from businesses to local social service agencies that feed the food insecure. Using the technology platform, the FEC will help coordinate food rescue donors, volunteer rescuers, and food assistance service providers to support hunger relief efforts and reduce food waste in Prince George’s County.  

“We’re excited to expand our reach into Prince George’s County and work with the Food Equity Council,” said Carol Shattuck, CEO, Food Rescue US. “Working directly with community organizations doing critical work for their residents, Food Rescue US is able to provide our innovative technology and institutional knowledge to empower their food recovery work.” 

Since 2013, the FEC has collaborated with residents, local businesses, organizations, and county government to create systemic change to the local food system, promote health, economic opportunity, food security, and well-being in Prince George’s County. This past year, the FEC’s work has taken on a new urgency as the COVID-19 pandemic caused skyrocketing rates of food insecurity and high demand for food among food assistance providers and social service organizations. According to the Capital Area Food Bank, over 104,760 county residents were food insecure in 2020, the highest in the Metro DC Region. By developing a robust food waste and recovery network, IPHI, FEC, and Food Rescue US hope to create a more resilient, sustainable, and equitable food system that can support the growing number of food-insecure residents. 

“Through the use of Food Rescue US platform we are able to create infrastructure changes to ensure that we don’t miss opportunities to connect food donors and services providers,” said Evelyn Kelly, Program Director at IPHI. “We will not only help families in need but also reduce our environmental footprint and food waste in our landfills.” 

Over the next few months, FEC staff will conduct outreach among businesses, organizations, volunteers, and providers to expand the Food Rescue US network in the county and bring partners onto the platform. The easy to use platform is free and available for desktop use. Food donors are invited to sign up to provide available food. Residents interested in volunteering can sign up to pick up and deliver food. Food providers can sign up to receive food to support food assistance and donation efforts. Everything is coordinated directly via the platform, and FEC staff are available to provide additional support and assistance to coordinate donations and delivery throughout Prince George’s County. 

About the Prince George’s County Food Equity Council: 

The Prince George’s County Food Equity Council (FEC) is a local food policy council that works to help residents grow, sell, and choose healthy foods. Since 2013, FEC has been a voice for county residents at the policymaking table. The FEC focuses on systematic and sustainable changes to promote health, economic opportunity, food security, and well-being in Prince George’s by advocating for policy that creates a more equitable local food system. The FEC is housed within the Institute for Public Health Innovation. For more information on FEC, visit and follow FEC on social media @pgcfec. 

About the Institute for Public Health Innovation:

IPHI develops multi-sector partnerships and innovative solutions to improve the public’s health and well-being across Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.  Our work strengthens health systems and policy, enhances conditions that promote health, and builds community capacity to ensure equitable health opportunities for all.  IPHI is one of over 40 public health institutes across the country and a member of the National Network of Public Health Institutes.  For more information on IPHI, see, and follow IPHI on Facebook and Twitter @InstitutePHI.


Montgomery County Anti-Vaping Campaign Announces Finalists From PSA Contest

The Campaign Called on Youth to Create Content Aimed at Educating and Preventing Their Peers From Using E-Cigarettes

The Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services, Montgomery County Public Schools, and the Healthy Montgomery Transforming Communities Initiative (TCI) are excited to share the finalists from their anti-vaping PSA video contest for students.

This contest, part of TCI’s goal to promote tobacco-free living, challenged students from 6th to 12th-grade living in Montgomery County to submit creative PSA-style videos for other young people, warning about the dangers of e-cigarettes. Ninety-two individual and group submissions were entered by 263 students and reviewed by a panel of judges for the chance to win a cash prize.

“My Story So Far”, submitted by a Damascus High School student, was awarded first place and followed by entries from the French International School, Northwood High School, Silver Creek Middle School, and Sherwood High School. Special acknowledgment was also given to Silver Creek Middle School and Mario A. Loiederman Middle School for submitting the most videos.

A logo for the campaign, inspired by the submissions of students, has been developed. The official campaign including social media graphics and messaging as well as bus ads will be launched in the coming month.

To view all the finalists’ videos or for more information and resources on the anti-vaping campaign, visit the website here.

About the Transforming Communities Initiative

The Healthy Montgomery Transforming Communities Initiative (TCI) is a partnership between the Institute for Public Health Innovation (IPHI), Trinity Health affiliate Holy Cross Health, the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services, and numerous other government and community partners.  Montgomery County, Maryland is one of eight locations selected by Trinity Health for investment through their national TCI grant program.

TCI is an innovative, collaborative funding initiative established by Trinity Health, one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic health care delivery systems in the nation. Grant recipients, in collaboration with a community coalition(s), implement and support evidence-based and innovative policy, systems and environmental change strategies to reduce obesity, promote tobacco-free living and address social influencers of health. TCI leverages health system funding, community partnerships, local match dollars, capital loan dollars, and national technical assistance resources to improve community health.

TCI School Wellness Coordinator (Contractor)

TCI School Wellness Coordinator (Contractor)


IPHI is recruiting a contractor to serve as a part-time Healthy Montgomery Transforming Communities Initiative (TCI) Wellness Coordinator to support the development and implementation of school wellness councils in Montgomery County, Maryland. Trinity Health, one of the country’s largest health systems, awarded partners involved in the Healthy Montgomery community health improvement process funding to implement a range of public health strategies to reduce obesity and promote tobacco-free living, and address social determinants that impact health outcomes. The local collaborative includes Trinity Health member Holy Cross Health, the Institute for Public Health Innovation (IPHI), Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services, and the Eat Well Be Active Partnership (EWBA) of Healthy Montgomery. Initially, strategies focused on policy, systems and environmental changes that offer long-term benefits for community health improvement and preventing chronic disease, with a specific focus on under-resourced and low-income communities in Gaithersburg, Germantown, Long Branch and Takoma Park. The strategies targeted vulnerable populations who are disproportionately impacted by health conditions related to poor diet, inactivity, tobacco use, and related social determinants, and who experience documented barriers to healthy living.

Nature of Work: The role of the School Wellness Coordinator is to provide technical assistance to Local School Wellness Councils (LSWCs) in order to ensure schools are aligned with the Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) Wellness Regulations. The School Wellness Coordinator will provide training and resources to Local School Wellness Council Champions and other LSWC members and partners to increase wellness council functionality. The School Wellness Coordinator will provide direct, hands-on assistance to schools as they write and implement their Wellness Action Plans and will monitor implementation and provide ongoing support to ensure sustainability. The Coordinator will also conduct outreach to schools to offer support, share tools, broker partner resources and will work with assigned schools on areas of interest for the schools and/or areas identified as needs by the Director of School Wellness.

Duration: This is a part-time, temporary position (18-20 hours a week), August 2018 through June 30, 2019.

Reports to: Institute for Public Health Innovation (IPHI) staff and MCPS Director, Student Wellness Initiatives


The Coordinator will receive guidance and direction from MCPS and IPHI in carrying out the following:

  • Provide remote or in-person technical assistance to schools as directed and in coordination with the MCPS Director of Student Wellness Initiatives.
  • Support the development of a toolkit.
  • Prepare, organize and manage a mini-grant process.
  • Coordinate communication about overall program, resources, and available support via monthly newsletters to schools and relevant partners.
  • Assist with event planning to enhance roll-out of district-wide wellness support.
  • Participate in weekly check-in calls with MCPS Director of Student Wellness Initiatives (or other designated MCPS staff) and IPHI staff.
  • Conduct relevant trainings for LSWC Champions as needed.
  • Assist with tracking the implementation and accomplishments of LSWCs across MCPS.
  • Organize and prepare reporting requirements for various funders, including monthly and annual reports.
  • Other duties related to this position as assigned.

QUALIFICATIONS:  A college or advanced degree and at least five years of work experience (paid or volunteer), with two years of experience in a related field(s) such as nutrition or food systems, physical activity, healthy living and wellness, community organizing, public health, or nursing. Preference for individuals with work experience in a school setting. References required and a background check.

  • Excellent organizational and project management skills.
  • Experience in developing and conducting trainings and provide technical assistance and/or coaching individuals or small groups.
  • Excellent relationship building, written communication, presentation and public speaking skills.
  • Experience working with diverse communities.
  • Ability to collaborate with and build positive relationships with diverse stakeholders.
  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision.
  • Demonstrated professional and political aptitude.
  • Strong-problem-solving skills with an ability to think creatively, reflect, and share knowledge.
  • Knowledge and experience collecting and managing social media, Google docs).
  • Bi-lingual candidates encouraged to apply.

COMPENSATION:  Hourly rate is $32.00. This is an 18-20 hour per week commitment, with some flexibility based on meeting attendance, trainings, and travel. The work will occur primarily during school hours and after school and may require occasional evening and weekend meetings. The scheduling of work hours is flexible. IPHI will also offer reimbursement for local travel to and from work activities. This is a 11-month contract position, beginning August 1, 2018. As a contract position, this position does not include fringe benefits.

JOB LOCATION: The Contractor/Coordinator will be assigned office space as well as a computer and other supplies at an MCPS location.

TRAVEL: Local travel throughout Montgomery County is required for this part-time contractor position.

The Institute for Public Health Innovation values a diverse, respectful, and collaborative work environment. We establish and maintain trustful relationships with all staff, contractors, funders, partners, and communities. We believe that hard work, a focus on quality, and a passion for the public’s health are required to improve the well-being of individuals, families, and communities. IPHI looks to all staff and contractors to contribute to the effective implementation of programmatic activities.








4-year degree


Please submit a cover letter and resume to: [email protected]. IPHI will not accept resumes without cover letters. Please place “Wellness Coordinator Contractor” in the subject line of the email when applying. Applications will be accepted through July 24th, 2018. No phone calls, please. Due to the large number of applicants expected, only successful candidates will be contacted.