A significant focus of the Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield mission is working
with Arkansas citizens to emphasize wellness and prevention and help create a state
of better health in Arkansas. This focus has generated several community-outreach
Arkansas Blue Cross strives to be a positive force in the communities we serve.
Besides providing financial support, our employees participate in many fund-raising
and health-education activities for local, nonprofit organizations that improve
the quality of life for Arkansas citizens.
Enterprise Employees' Committee
The purpose of the Enterprise Employees' Committee (EEC) is to promote approved
community activities and charitable organizations to make a positive impact on the
various communities we serve. The EEC also provides recognition and support to employees
during times of need. The EEC consists of 40 representatives chosen by their fellow
employees who administer and assist with many company events to include charity
drives and quarterly blood drives.
The EEC has helped organizations from Arkansas Children's Hospital to Youth Home
to the Dorcas House through fund-raisers, food drives and even races. The EEC helps
raise thousands of dollars annually for causes, along with coordinating the donation
of countless pounds of non-perishables for food banks as well as items for our men
and women in military service, and providing hundreds of volunteer hours.
Supporting Health Organizations
You will find the cross and shield at many community events and functions, especially
those that fight disease and promote good health and wellness. Just two examples
are: the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Walk for a Cure and the Komen
for the Cure Race. Because more than 25 million Americans suffer from diabetes,
including hundreds of thousands of children affected with this lifelong disease,
Arkansas Blue Cross raises money each year to support JDRF's mission: to find a
cure for diabetes and its complications through the support of research. You also
will see hundreds of employees in blue T-shirts among thousands of other supporters
for the Komen for the Cure races around the state. It is estimated that one in eight
women will develop breast cancer in her lifetime, and the Susan G. Komen Breast
Cancer Foundation raises money for research, education, screening and treatment
to fight this disease. Our employees enthusiastically help raise money and awareness
Blue & You Fitness Challenge
The Blue & You Fitness Challenge began as the Arkansas Fitness Challenge in 2004.
The idea for the Arkansas Fitness Challenge was rooted during collaboration between
the Arkansas Department of Health and Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield while
working together on the Arkansas Cardiovascular Task Force. Realizing that better
health begins at home, the two entities began working together to create a fun program
for helping their employees increase their physical activity, and subsequently,
begin to address weight loss and management.
Thus, the first Arkansas Fitness Challenge came into being. The Fitness Challenge
is a contest during which employees from opposing teams participate in eligible
exercises (cardiovascular focused) for a three-month time period (March through
May). Measurements are established and given a point value at the beginning of the
contest, then recorded throughout the competition. At the end of the contest, a
winning team is named, based on accumulated points. The contest has grown each year
and now includes groups (of 10 or more) representing more than 128 large and small
companies, banks, schools and universities, physician offices, churches, hospitals
and state agencies. Participants exercise along a virtual map through all 50 states
“visiting” points of interest along the way.
Blue & You Foundation
The Blue & You Foundation for a Healthier Arkansas is a charitable, 501(c)(3) foundation
established and funded by Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield to promote better
health in Arkansas. The Foundation awards grants to nonprofit or governmental organizations
and programs that positively affect the health of Arkansans. Particular emphasis
is given to projects affecting health care delivery, health care policy and health
Projects must demonstrate strong community, regional or statewide support, such
as co-funding by other community, regional or statewide organizations or groups.
Projects also should demonstrate operational and financial viability that will survive
and continue after funding from the Foundation ends.
Visit the Foundation website for current application deadlines, guidelines
and the online application. The Foundation offers both a $1,000 mini-grant
program and a regular grant program for awards ranging from $5,000 to $150,000.
Blue & Youth Health Program
The Blue & Youth Health Program is a community relations effort designed to improve
the health status of our communities — starting with the young people of Arkansas.
The Blue & Youth Health Program encourages healthy behaviors by teaching students
about choices that can contribute to healthy or unhealthy lifestyles.
BlueAnn Ewe, who serves as our health ambassador, is a 6-foot-tall blue sheep, who
appears as a costumed and animated character. In more than 10 years, BlueAnn has
become well known around the state, and the program has reached more than 1 million
young people with a health message through its core components.