Zumba Fitness–the largest dance-fitness company in the world and creator of the acclaimed Zumba® dance-fitness party workout–today announced the launch of"The Great Calorie Drive™". The initiative's directive,"Don't just burn calories, donate them", encourages people to help fight one of the world's greatest health risks: hunger.
Since its inception in 2001, Zumba Fitness has transformed millions of lives through its contagious world rhythms and choreography and is now working together with Feeding America–the largest U.S. hunger-relief organization–and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), the largest humanitarian organization fighting hunger worldwide. With hunger affecting one in six people in the United States (U.S. Department of Agriculture) and 870 million people worldwide (Food and Agriculture Organization), Zumba is urging everyone to"Give the world a reason to dance" by attending Zumba classes and donating the calories burned to Feeding America and WFP.
"Hunger is one of the world's greatest solvable problems," said Alberto Perlman, co-founder and CEO of Zumba Fitness."While many fight to burn calories, others suffer from hunger. The Zumba network is in a unique position to tip the scales in the right direction, and we expect to touch millions of lives."
As part of"The Great Calorie Drive" campaign, Zumba recorded a public service announcement (PSA) to encourage people everywhere to do their part to help eradicate hunger. The PSA featuring celebrity Zumba Instructors, GRAMMY® winning artist and TV star Lil Jon, and 19/Interscope multi-platinum selling artist Phillip Phillips set to his song"Gone, Gone, Gone," is an inspirational look into how we could all make a difference and bring us closer to solving the world's greatest health risk that affects millions of people throughout the world.
"'The Great Calorie Drive' is an important initiative for people all over the world to get involved in the fight against world hunger," said Phillips."I'm excited to be a part of this campaign to help increase awareness and drive action surrounding this resolvable issue that surrounds each and every one of us every day."
From now through June 2013, participants are encouraged to shake off their calories in Zumba classes worldwide, and Zumba will donate the equivalent of the average amount of calories burned per class (750 calories, for up to three classes) to Feeding America and WFP. During the three-month campaign, Zumba Fitness is challenging the world to donate 2.6 billion calories that will equate to roughly 3.5 million meals (based on the typical meal size) toward hunger-relief efforts. The steps are simple:
In addition to donating the calories burned at Zumba classes, Zumba enthusiasts are able to help the cause by purchasing a special limited-edition line of Zumba apparel and accessories created specifically for"The Great Calorie Drive" initiative. For each purchase, Zumba Fitness will donate 30 percent of the sale price to Feeding America and WFP."The Great Calorie Drive" Zumba apparel is now available at Zumba.com/shop.
"With more than 50 million Americans struggling with hunger, food insecurity remains at record highs," said Leah Ray, vice president, corporate partnerships at Feeding America."Everyone can do something to help solve hunger. We are excited to partner with Zumba and the World Food Programme on this campaign to drive awareness, promote health and wellness and give everyone a reason to dance."
"'The Great Calorie Drive' is incredibly motivating–it's about taking care of others while you take care of yourself," said Jay Aldous, director of private sector partnerships at WFP."This is a terrific initiative and a great example of how technology can be put to use for a great cause."
To learn more about"The Great Calorie Drive," please visit greatcaloriedrive.com
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Feeding America is the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. Together, we provide food to more than 46 million people through 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in communities across America. Feeding America also supports programs that improve food security among the people we serve; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger. Donate. Volunteer. Advocate. Educate. Together we can solve hunger. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
Zumba® Fitness is a global lifestyle brand that fuses fitness, entertainment and culture into an exhilarating dance-party workout. Coined "fitness-parties," Zumba classes blend upbeat world rhythms with easy-to-follow choreography, which provide effective, total-body workouts. Founded in 2001, the company is now the largest branded fitness program in the world -- reporting more than 14 million weekly class participants, in over 140,000 locations, across more than 185 countries. In addition to its original Zumba® program, the company also offers a range of specialty classes, including Zumba Gold® (for active older adults), Zumba® Toning (body-sculpting class that uses maraca-like Toning Sticks), Aqua Zumba® (the ultimate "pool party" workout), Zumbatomic® (Zumba routines for kids), Zumba Sentao™ (chair-based Zumba class that strengthens, balances and stabilizes the core), and Zumba® in the Circuit (a 30-minute workout that combines signature Zumba® moves with circuit training at timed intervals). The Zumba® fitness lifestyle is rounded out by the company's many consumer product offerings, including DVD sets, music collections, multi-seasonal apparel and footwear, video games, Fitness-Concert™ events and a lifestyle magazine. For more information about Zumba Fitness programs and products, or to find a live class, visit zumba.com and find us on Facebook and Twitter.
ABOUT THE UNITED NATIONS WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME
WFP is the world's largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide. Each year, on average, WFP feeds more than 90 million people in more than 70 countries. Follow us on Twitter @wfp_media.