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85 Illinois schools to receive new water bottle-filling stations

Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation and Illinois Children’s Healthcare Foundation

award H20 On the Go grants

NAPERVILLE, Ill. (Dec. 2, 2020) – Eighty-five Illinois schools will receive new water bottle-filling stations to encourage students to drink more water as part of H2O On the Go, a new grant program by Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation and Illinois Children’s Healthcare Foundation.

H2O On the Go allows for easier access to drinking water for Illinois students while at school and helps encourage them to choose water instead of sugary beverages such as soda, juice and sports drinks. Illinois elementary, middle and high schools selected for this program will have existing water fountains replaced with new water bottle-filling stations. The schools will also receive toothbrushes and reusable water bottles for their students.

“Through our H2O On the Go program, we are fulfilling our mission to improve the overall health of Illinois children by making drinking water more accessible to students throughout the state,” said Lora Vitek, executive director of Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation. “With the new water bottle-filling stations, students will be able to stay hydrated and cut back on sugar consumption, reducing their risk of tooth decay.”

The Foundations launched the program earlier this year as part of a shared initiative to improve the overall health and well-being of Illinois children. The new water bottle-filling stations are supplied by Elkay, based in Downers Grove. Besides the notable health benefits, the H20 On the Go refillable water stations help reduce waste and promote conservation efforts.

“The Illinois Children’s Healthcare Foundation is happy to see the installation of these water bottle-filling stations in many of our state’s schools, which showcases our continual effort to improve the oral and overall health of Illinois children,” said Heather Higgins Alderman, the Foundation’s president. “We are glad to partner with Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation for this program to encourage children to drink more water and have it readily available for them at school as a healthy beverage choice.”

Tooth decay, while largely preventable, is the most chronic infectious disease among children. Drinking water rather than unhealthy beverages can help keep teeth strong and reduce cavities by almost 25%.1 It can also help combat obesity, increase energy levels and improve students’ cognitive function. The new water bottle-filling stations are also touch-free, which lowers the chance of germ exchange.

See a full list of Illinois schools selected for the H20 On the Go program here: www.deltadentalil.com/h2o-on-the-go-recipients.

About Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation

The Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation was formed in March 2008 and is the 501(c)(3) charitable arm of Delta Dental of Illinois. Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation works to support and improve the oral health of people in Illinois, with a specific focus on children. In the past decade, combined efforts of Delta Dental of Illinois and Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation have provided more than $11 million to programs and organizations in Illinois that improve the oral health of the state’s residents.

For additional information about Delta Dental of Illinois Foundation, please see www.deltadentalil.com.

About Illinois Children’s Healthcare Foundation

The Illinois Children's Healthcare Foundation (ILCHF) has a single vision: Every child in Illinois grows up healthy. Working through grantee partners across the state, the Foundation focuses its grant making on identifying and funding solutions to the barriers that prevent children from accessing the ongoing health care they need. For more information, go to ilchf.org.

1 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention