Oral Health Kansas Advocacy • Public Awareness Education
Cartoon Contest winner

Mouth Matters


People who drink 3 or more glasses of soda each day have 62% more tooth decay, fillings and tooth loss.

Thirsty for Health cartoon character Thirsty for Health

Thirsty for Health is excited to announce the 2016 Cartoon Character Contest Winner!

Jenna Weikel, age 12
7th grade at Fort Scott Middle School

Rules for Submission:
Middle and High School students at Thirsty for Health participating schools were invited to submit artwork including drawings, paintings, etc. of a character made of water and/or doing some activity involving water. With permission from the original artist, the winning entry will be used at the official mascot for Thirsty for Health.
- The student who creates the winning character design is to receive a $50 Visa gift card!
- The school with the winning student’s design will be awarded a free water bottle filling station!

Congratulations Jenna!


Oral Health Kansas believes in the mission of making every child’s potential a reality. Thirsty for Health is a three-year project funded by the Kansas Health Foundation, and accomplishes this goal through engaging and empowering families, communities and schools to advocate for the health of all children. Kids who drink water do better in school. In fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends children and teenagers be taught to pick water as their first drink of choice. Thirsty for Health is designed to develop and implement a comprehensive plan that will increase access to and student consumption of healthy beverages like water throughout the school day, and milk during lunchtime.

By participating in this project, schools districts will have added support to meet the water access parameters stated in the Kansas School Wellness Policy Guidelines for Nutrition. Popular culture has made beverages other than water exciting, interesting, and often the preferred choice for young people. Water is calorie-free and helps children avoid health problems such as obesity and dental caries when it is chosen over high calorie, sugar-sweetened drinks. The CDC says, “Drinking water can contribute to good health, and schools are in a unique position to promote healthy, dietary behaviors, including drinking water.” This project is designed to do just that – help schools promote drinking water by making it more accessible, available and desirable to Kansas schoolchildren.

Bringing Thirsty for Health to your school could provide the following support and resources:

    Free resources and assessments for benchmarking where water consumption can be increased

      A sugary drink display demonstrating the levels of sugar contained in popular beverages

      Education materials and curriculums along with assistance in updating administrative and building policies plus facility water access points

        Facilitation for focus groups and social media campaigns including a cartoon character contest to help improve student perceptions about how drinking water is both the healthy and ‘cool’ choice

    To find out how to participate please contact Kelly Rippel, Water Access Manager at krippel@ohks.org or call 785.235.6039



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