Savannah’s COPE for Change Director Selected to Address Childhood Obesity in Congressional Report

(SAVANNAH, GA) Founding Executive Director Sandy Baker of Savannah’s COPE for Change, Childhood Obesity Prevention + Education, has been recognized by Congresswoman Dr. Robin Kelly (D-IL) for her contributions to the 2015 Kelly Report.

The Kelly Report is a call-to-action for Congress to make improving health outcomes in diverse communities a top priority, bringing together Members of Congress, medical professionals and public health thought leaders to examine the root causes and impact of health disparities in America and provide a comprehensive set of legislative and policy recommendations to reverse them.

As the Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) Health Braintrust, Dr. Kelly is committed to promoting the need for trusted, independent information and innovative solutions that respond to the major health issues facing our nation and its people.

“I thank Sandy Baker and COPE for their contribution to the 2015 Kelly Report,” said Congresswoman Kelly. “Now is the time to address the issue of obesity in America, particularly in children. As the Kelly Report mentions, children with obesity are more likely to suffer from high blood pressure, hyperlipidemia, insulin resistance, diabetes, sleep apnea, asthma, discrimination, and self-esteem issues. As we continue the conversation about reducing health disparities and achieving health equity in a generation, we must put childhood obesity at the forefront in the discussion.”

Baker’s findings included in the report reveal how the COPE for Change model can change childhood obesity outcomes though family-based, after-school programs that target three major areas to reduce and prevent childhood obesity. These are: nutrition education, physical fitness, and a therapeutic/behavioral component. “COPE’s inclusion of behavioral health as well as a parent component could be what is needed to change the outcomes we are seeing in the childhood obesity epidemic,” noted Baker. “We have the results to prove our method is a game changer.”

Link to the COPE segment of the Kelly report:
Link to the full Kelly report:

Baker founded COPE for Change, Childhood Obesity Prevention + Education, because of her own experience as an overweight child and obese adult. After a lifetime of failing at weight loss, finally losing 135 pounds and maintaining that since 2006, she recognized our young people need the coping skills necessary to ward off food attachments and self-criticism before it takes them down the path of obesity and low self-esteem.

She developed an evidence-based after school program to facilitate the changes necessary to help our youth develop a healthy relationship with food. With a BA in Psychology, Baker is also a Master Certified Health Coach, and is working on her Eating Psychology Coach certification. Her enthusiastic and positive approach to life brings hope to those desperate for change.

Sandy Baker, Founding Executive Director  of Savannah’s COPE for Change, Childhood Obesity Prevention & Education

Sandy Baker, Founding Executive Director of Savannah’s COPE for Change, Childhood Obesity Prevention & Education

COPE (Childhood Obesity Prevention + Education) for Change is a program based in Savannah, Ga., with a mission to combat childhood obesity through a threefold approach of nutrition education, fitness, and behavioral health. The inclusion of behavioral health is the element that truly sets COPE apart. COPE was founded in 2009 with the belief that we must teach kids healthy coping skills in order for them to learn balance in life and health. Visit the COPE website at or contact Sandy Baker by email

Sandy Baker
COPE for Change

Marjorie Young
Carriage Trade PR, Inc.


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