More than 6 months has passed since the last European Obesity Forum in Brussels and many of our European members have experienced considerable milestones during this period:
Project Spraoi, Ireland
Project Spraoi, based in Cork, has launched a programme website at http://www.cit.ie/projectspraoi. Project representatives also met with the city’s Lord Mayor who will provide support by attending and hosting events for Project Spraoi. Another new partner for the Irish programme is Healthy Ireland (the department of health in Ireland). The programme will also carry out a two year evaluation in the summer and have articles published.
More than 3500 children under the age of 18 and their parents have been reached by the program in its year in the community of Dunaharaszti. Close collaboration with local political and private partners, e.g. municipalities and institutions, kindergartens and schools, played a huge role in the success. As Jolán Kubányi, president of the MDOSZ, professional director of the program highlighted: “According to results of the first survey 26.5% of children aged 6-12 years are facing with weight problems in Dunaharaszti. It is insufficient to teach them the basics of healthy eating in the schools, supportive family environment and engagement of parents has proven to be essential to prevent childhood obesity.”
In the past year the GYERE program delivered messages on three different topics of healthy eating: benefits of fruits and vegetables, dietary role of whole grains and cereals, importance of proper hydration. Messages were conveyed by dieticians via various activities, e.g. lectures, interactive workshops, games, quizzes. Short physical activity with the children was also integrated at the end of the trainings. Close collaboration with the private partners (e.g. kindergartens, schools) in Dunaharaszti created opportunity for the GYERE program to participate on other local events as well.
Facebook fan page of the program gives useful tips and tricks on healthy lifestyle for mums and families. Additionally the GYERE program offers free-of charge online nutritional consultancy provided by dietician experts. A huge family event, the “GYERE Day” activated and entertained the whole community with various attractions, games and sport facilities in the summer of 2015.
Our Croatian member, PETICA, has expanded the scope of the programme from the school environment to include the whole community. This change has been accompanied by some great community-based actions such as A+ breakfast campaign and a physical activity campaign encouraging parents and children to exercise together at schools. PETICA is also planning to organize a conference in September in Zagreb to present its work to both public and private sector stakeholders.
Tackling Childhood Obesity in the Tri-borough, United Kingdom
EIN’s newest British member has been experienced great success in rallying local stakeholders behind the community-based programme. The programme has also developed exciting activities to support local families in adopting a healthier lifestyle.