Economy League & Independence Blue Cross Announce Well City Challenge People’s Choice Winners

Economy League & Independence Blue Cross Announce

Well City Challenge People’s Choice Winners

Winners selected by the community to receive funding to address millennial health challenges


PHILADELPHIA – March 10, 2021 — The Economy League of Greater Philadelphia (ELGP) and Independence Blue Cross (Independence) today announced the People’s Choice winners of the Well City Challenge. The three winners were selected by members of the public and received $7,500 to continue refining and implementing their ideas to help improve millennial health.


The Well City Challenge is a social impact program to support innovators with new ideas for addressing and improving millennial mental and physical health through community-led ventures. The announcement of the People’s Choice winners follows a previous announcement of three Grand Prize winners on March 5.


Well City Challenge winners were selected from among 15 finalist teams chosen from an initial pool of more than 100 applications representing all five counties and 51 ZIP codes in Southeastern Pennsylvania. People’s Choice winners were chosen for three unique categories - Community and Social Connection, Food and Nutrition, and Mind and Body.


The 2021 Well City Challenge winners are:


Community & Social Connection

People’s Choice Winner: Let’s Talk Philly Conversation Circles in partnership with The Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians, will offer immigrant millennials a space to learn English conversation skills, develop social capital, and tell their stories to break stereotypes, prejudice and increase understanding about immigrant wellness.


Food & Nutrition

People’s Choice Winner: The Freedom Greens & Gardens Project reimagines Malcolm X Park and surrounding blocks as a destination for wellness within the heart of West Philadelphia by providing a place where millennials can learn how to plan and cook nutritious meals and receive the resources and tools they need to live healthier lifestyles and thrive physically and mentally.


Mind and Body

People’s Choice Winner: Strides is a running-based training program that encourages millennials to prioritize their long term mental and physical health. Strides empowers its members by building their self-confidence and teaching them to take control of their mental and physical health.


“When we launched the Well City Challenge in cooperation with Independence Blue Cross, we knew that our community was going to respond with amazing ideas that could truly make a difference in the lives of Philadelphians,” said Nick Frontino, managing director of the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia. “The proposals we saw from our competition finalists were even better than we could have hoped. From physical and mental health, to enhancing quality of life, each of these winners demonstrated the ability to tackle an important and complex issue facing Philadelphia and address it in a manner that will have a powerful and lasting impact in the lives of others.”


“The millennial generation has experienced drastic increases in a wide range of major health issues and now faces a historic pandemic,” said Gregory E. Deavens, president and CEO of Independence Blue Cross. “With millennials becoming the largest age-based demographic cohort in the United States, we knew we needed to tackle this problem with different solutions.  Each of the winning Well City Challenge teams developed inspiring and unique action plans that will help improve health outcomes and quality of life experienced by their friends, neighbors and community members across the Philadelphia area.”

Deavens congratulated all the Well City Challenge winners, thanking them for their hard work in this video released by Independence Blue Cross.


The Well City Challenge was inspired by the 2019 Blue Cross Blue Shield Health of America report “The Health of Millennials,” which found that millennials are suffering from more physical and mental health challenges than previous generations, including double-digit increases in 8 out of 10 top health conditions.  Additional research found the economic impact of millennials’ poorer health could result in healthcare treatments increasing by 33 percent, a 40 percent mortality rate increase, and a potential average annual income reduction of $4,500 for each millennial.


About Economy League of Greater Philadelphia

The Economy League of Greater Philadelphia addresses critical issues facing Greater Philadelphia by providing impactful research, connecting diverse leaders, and advancing shared solutions. We envision a thriving Greater Philadelphia region powered by informed and collaborative leadership. Since its founding in 1909, the Economy League has believed that high-quality analysis and practical insight about the region’s most important challenges and opportunities, combined with collaborative, cross-sector leadership are crucial drivers of prosperity in Greater Philadelphia.


About Independence Blue Cross:

Independence Blue Cross is the leading health insurance organization in southeastern Pennsylvania. With our affiliates, we serve 8 million people nationwide. For more than 80 years, we have been enhancing the health and well-being of the people and communities we serve. We deliver innovative and competitively priced health care products and services; pioneer new ways to reward doctors, hospitals, and other health care professionals for coordinated, quality care; and support programs and events that promote wellness. To learn more, visit Connect with us on Facebook at and on Twitter at @ibx. Independence Blue Cross is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.