Sorority Event Promotes Health for African-American Women
WASHINGTON – Aetna (NYSE: AET) will be the corporate sponsor for The Delta Research and Educational Foundation’s 5-K Centennial Walk and Health Fair, which will be held July 12 on the National Mall.
The Foundation was established by Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., the world’s largest Greek-lettered African-American sorority. The public charity supports scholastic achievement, public service programs, and research initiatives focused on African-American women.
U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin will be grand marshal of the 5-K walk and will deliver opening remarks. Actress Suzzanne Douglas (The Parent Hood) will sing the national anthem. Douglas and Dr. Benjamin are Delta Sigma Theta members.
Delta Sigma Theta was founded at Washington, D.C.’s Howard University on Jan. 13, 1913. The July 12 event is part of a broader celebration of the sorority’s 100th anniversary. More than 50,000 people are expected to be in attendance that day, with a goal of more than 1,000 participants in the walk.
“The Delta Foundation welcomes and thanks Aetna for its sponsorship of our 5-K Centennial Walk and Health Fair,” said Alison J. Harmon, Ed.D., president of The Delta Foundation. “This first-time collaboration recognizes and celebrates the importance of keeping health, wellness and fitness top-of-mind among African-American women and girls.”
In addition to its $30,000 sponsorship of the walk, Aetna will sponsor the “Aetna Rejuvenation Station,” where back massage therapists will be available for walkers participating in the July 12 event. On the mornings of July 15-17, fitness trainers will conduct workout sessions for Delta Sigma Theta members and their guests at multiple Washington, D.C. hotels.
“Aetna is delighted to support the efforts of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and its foundation,” said Floyd W. Green, III, Aetna’s head of Community Relations and Urban Marketing. “We’ve worked closely over the years with many national black Greek fraternities and sororities. Delta Sigma Theta members have been at the center of numerous programs that have made a real difference in their communities.”
Aetna’s sponsorship of the walk and fitness event continues its ongoing support of programs that help predominantly African-American communities improve their health and expand their access to care.
This year marks 12 years since Aetna began actively targeting and addressing racial and ethnic disparities in health care. The company was the first insurer to invite its members to share racial and ethnic information. Millions of people have voluntarily provided information that has helped Aetna better understand how different communities are being served by the health care system.
In 2011 Aetna donated $1.275 million to support the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial Project, which was initiated by Alpha Phi Alpha, Inc., the nation’s oldest African-American Greek fraternity. A portion of Aetna’s gift assisted in the planting of 180 new cherry trees that decorate the MLK Memorial site on the National Mall.
The company also created a national recognition program called “Aetna Voices of Health,” which honors organizations that share Aetna’s goals of closing racial and ethnic health care quality gaps and helping people live healthier lives. Now in its third year, “Aetna Voices of Health” will begin its 2013 online competition Aug. 28 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial.
About the Delta Research and Educational Foundation
The Delta Research and Educational Foundation was established in 1967 by Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. as a public charity supporting scholastic achievement, public service programs and research initiatives focused on African-American women and their families. For more information, visit www.deltafoundation.net.
Aetna is one of the nation’s leading diversified health care benefits companies, serving an estimated 44 million people with information and resources to help them make better informed decisions about their health care. Aetna offers a broad range of traditional, voluntary and consumer-directed health insurance products and related services, including medical, pharmacy, dental, behavioral health, group life and disability plans, and medical management capabilities, Medicaid health care management services, workers’ compensation administrative services and health information technology services. Aetna’s customers include employer groups, individuals, college students, part-time and hourly workers, health plans, health care providers, governmental units, government-sponsored plans, labor groups and expatriates. For more information, see www.aetna.com.