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ING Run For Something Better Receives Healthy Youth for a Healthy Future Champion Award

Acting Surgeon General recognizes school-based running program for promoting healthy lifestyle

ATLANTA, Feb. 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Financial services leader ING today received the Healthy Youth for a Healthy Future Champion Award from the Surgeon General for its ING Run For Something Better (ING RFSB) program. The Healthy Youth for a Healthy Future project focuses on recognizing and showcasing those communities throughout the nation that are addressing childhood obesity through prevention. They focus on programs that help kids stay active, encourage healthy eating habits and promote healthy choices. ING RFSB funds running and physical-fitness education programs in schools, offering children a healthy start in life and fostering their desire to exercise before obesity ever begins. "Teaching our children the importance of eating well and being physically active at a young age is crucial to reversing the trend of obesity in this country," said Acting Surgeon General Steven K. Galson, M.D., M.P.H., a rear admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service. "Everyone has a role to play in this fight to prevent childhood overweight and obesity."

Rear Adm. Galson presented the award during his nationwide tour to promote the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Childhood Overweight and Obesity Prevention Initiative. Rhonda Mims, president of the ING Foundation, accepted the award on behalf of ING at the champion awards ceremony at the New Schools at Carver School of Health Sciences and Research. New Schools at Carver also received an award for helping local teenagers develop healthy habits through innovative health education and physical-activity programs. "Georgia is to be commended for its efforts in mobilizing communities, schools, government, businesses and committed individuals," added Galson.

"ING is committed to our nation's schools and educators. We also recognize the importance of giving back to the communities where we do business, and that's why we developed the program to help combat childhood obesity and promote kids' fitness," said Mims. "Since 2007, over 3,250 students from Atlanta Public Schools, Fulton County Schools and Decatur Middle School have run over 42,500 miles collectively through ING Run For Something Better," added Mims.

As the sponsor of a number of premier running events in the U.S., ING has been encouraging young people to get physically fit while helping Americans be more fiscally fit. Since the program's inception in 2003, ING RFSB's national campaign has funded free, school-based programs in which more than 40,000 children have collectively run over 1.2 million miles.

In 2006, ING also created the Orange Laces program - a public fundraising campaign that encourages everyone to join the cause. When someone donates $10 or more, ING gives them a pair of orange shoelaces to show they are "tied" to kids' fitness. One hundred percent of the net proceeds from Orange Laces donations go directly to ING Run For Something Better fitness programs.

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About ING

ING is a global financial institution of Dutch origin offering banking, investments, life insurance and retirement services to over 85 million residential, corporate and institutional clients in more than 50 countries. With a diverse workforce of about 125,000 people, ING comprises a broad spectrum of prominent companies that increasingly serve their clients under the ING brand.

In the U.S., the ING (NYSE: ING) family of companies offers a comprehensive array of financial services to retail and institutional clients, which includes life insurance, retirement plans, mutual funds, managed accounts, alternative investments, direct banking, institutional investment management, annuities, employee benefits, financial planning, and reinsurance. ING holds top-tier rankings in key U.S. markets and serves over 17 million customers across the nation.

ING's diversity management philosophy and commitment to workforce diversity, diversity marketing, corporate citizenship and supplier diversity fosters an inclusive environment for employees that supports a distinctive product and service experience for the financial services consumer.

For more information, visit

About the ING Foundation

The ING Foundation's mission is to improve the quality of life in the communities where ING operates and its employees and customers live. Through charitable giving and employee volunteerism, the foundation focuses on sustainable programs in the areas of financial literacy, children's education and diversity.

For more information, visit

About the ING Run for Something Better

The ING Run for Something Better is a fundraising campaign that supports community and school-based youth running programs. Linked to ING's long-distance race sponsorships, the program was created to introduce kids to the benefits of sport, a habit of physical fitness, and a healthy lifestyle that prevents conditions such as childhood obesity. In today's world of poor nutrition and less-active lifestyles - which may contribute to childhood obesity - ING is using its position as a sponsor of marathons as a platform for helping kids get fit through free, school-based running programs. ING's goal is to invest in the health of American children by donating $2.5 million to running programs to get 500,000 kids running by 2010. ING has also created a special charitable fund to encourage others to support the cause by making their own contribution. When someone donates $10 or more to the ING Run for Something Better, ING will recognize their contribution by giving them a special pair of orange shoelaces to wear showing that they are "tied" to supporting kids' fitness. 100% of the proceeds from the sale of orange laces go to the ING Run for Something Better fitness programs.

For more information about the orange laces, go to

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