Project HELP

The purpose of our Health and Wellness initiative is to improve the overall quality of life for African Americans through health education.

Project HELP (Healthy Eating, Lifestyles, and Physical Activity)

Project Help is an intergenerational approach to Health and Wellness for the African American community using Project H.E.L.P principles:

  • Healthy Eating

  • Physical Activity

  • Chronic Disease Prevention


  • Increase participant knowledge of risk factors that lead to chronic disease (i.e. cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke, obesity, and diabetes);

  • Develop community health ambassadors to build healthier environments for families.

  • To help reduce disparities in cardiovascular disease in the African American community.

Program Overview:

Each year the health department selects units across the nation to receive Project HELP grants which will aid them in providing health education classes, programs, and events in their communities.  A curriculum was developed for units based on the Project HELP principles. Units are encouraged to utilize the Project HELP curriculum as a training module and resource on Health and Wellness education: For more information about these grants contact the health department (

Project HELP 2013 Grantees

Region 1
Beverly Hills/Hollywood, California

Region 2
Montclair, New Jersey
Lower Sussex, Delaware
New London, Connecticut

Region 3
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Kankakee County, Illinois
Indiana State University

Region 5
Crockett County, Tennessee

Region 6
Mainland, Texas

Region 7
Anne Arundel County

Summary of 2013 Project HELP Program:

With support from the Coca Cola Foundation, the NAACP’s local unit and national staff were able to train, 1236 constituents and NAACP members through our Project HELP principles. Through the compilation of the pre/post test findings 87% of respondents improved their knowledge on obesity. In addition, 95% of respondents plan to adopt Project HELP principles in their personal lives.

Community Outreach
All of the awarded units established partnerships with local community based or civic organizations to expand their resources and establish sustainable relationships. All educational events featured experts in the areas of obesity, chronic disease prevention, and nutrition. The eight grantees were creative in their approach to implement Project HELP in their communities. The following are a list of sample program activities implemented by Project HELP grantees: 

  • African American History Walking Tours: Residents participated in physical activity while learning about their local history. Participants were provided with healthy snacks including Dasani Water to educate consumers on the healthy options available in the Coca Cola product line.
  • Healthy Eating Demonstrations: Grantees successfully partnered with local chefs and culinary schools to offer healthy eating demonstrations.  Many workshops focused on healthy eating with limited budget for families. At times incentives were provided including but not limited to supermarket gift cards, healthy cookbooks and soul food restaurant gift cards.
  • Chronic Disease Prevention:  Most units partnered with local hospitals and health departments to bring physicians, nurse practitioners, nutritionists and graduate public health students before workshops participants.  Session participants learned about risk factors of chronic disease and how they impact the Black community.  Most presentations were equipped with visual aids, personal testimonials, potential risk factors, and prevention strategies to combat chronic diseases