Community Initiatives

childhood obesity preventionPrevention of child obesity in community level :

Community holds another important role in the prevention of child obesity. Communities can plan events and build places that help kids stay active and encourage healthy eating habits.

Talk with schools concerning physical activity promotion:

Schools can offer ways for all students to enjoy physical activities recess, sports programs, walking to and from school, and through classroom lessons that have movement activities.

Resources : Fit in Daily Physical Activity Form
Try Tips to Eat Well and Move More
Estimated Calorie Requirements by Gender, Age, and Physical Activity Level

childhood obesity school

Maintain community recreation areas:

childhood obesity preventionHow much physical activity people do is affected by the environment, which also makes a difference in preventing obesity in children. Communities can be designed to support activities, like regular walking, biking, or playing of sports. Children’s physical activity levels go up when more recreational areas are near their homes. Look into nearby parks, sidewalks, playgrounds, skateboard parks, beaches, forests, trails, community gardens, and even shopping malls for increasing children’s physical activity.

Resources : Active Environments
State-based Physical Activity Program Directory

kids walk to schoolIncrease the “Walkability” of your community:

Walkability is the idea of quantifying the safety and desirability of the walking routes. A walkability audit tool is designed to study places for walking, destinations, and areas along and near a walking route and suggest changes to make the route more attractive and useful to pedestrians. Using CDC’s Walkability Audit from this site can help you assess the safety or attractiveness of the walking routes at your worksite. The audit helps you map out the most commonly used walking routes, and helps you identify the most common safety hazards and things that can keep employees and students from walking at work or school.

Resources : KidsWalk to School

Encourage healthy eating habits:

Raise the number of places people can get healthy food they can afford. Make space for a farmers’ market. Ask people to buy foods and goods grown in or near the community. Work with your local food back to offer fresh fruits and vegetables, in addition to “healthier” pre-packaged foods, like low-fat or reduced salt products. Create a community vegetable garden, where families and groups can grow their own produces while increasing their activity level and creating time for togetherness.

community vegetable garden

Work with grocery stores and businesses to limit displays and ads of junk food and candy aimed at children. Additionally, increase attractive, attention-getting displays of healthy food choices aimed at children.Work with your faith-based community to help promote healthy eating habits. Talk to your church or other place of worship about encouraging members of the congregation to bring healthier meal options such as more fruits and vegetables to functions, and eliminate junk food in children’s worship and fellowship programs.

Resources : Body & Soul - A Celebration of Healthy Eating and Living

Promote healthy choices:

childhood obesity prevention in communityBuild or grow a community group to help stop child obesity. People and groups working together can do more than working alone. (Ways to Enhance Children's Activity & Nutrition) is a program that offers everyone in the community a chance to help.Identify opportunities and challenges for improving the community surroundings. Analyze barriers that hinder efforts to promote good nutrition and physical activity and identify opportunities to increase positive changes. A community “needs assessment” focused on childhood overweight and obesity prevention can help make people aware, build support, push for change, and bring new partners to help solve the problem.

Resources : Task Force on Community Preventive Services
Run the Program
Sign Up to Become a We Can! Community Site
Get Started
Resources for Communities

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