Fighting Childhood Obesity With Tools, Teaching
The HSC Foundation is unveiling a grassroots campaign targeting childhood obesity awareness and education in low-income communities in the Washington area. The campaign will address the way families view weight and obesity and help them make healthier decisions for themselves and their children.
National statistics show approximately one in five African American and Latino children are obese, increasing the risk of developing high cholesterol, hypertension, respiratory ailments, orthopedic problems, depression and type 2 diabetes. Latino adolescents born in the U.S. to immigrant parents are twice as likely as their foreign-born counterparts who move to the U.S.
Traditional fitness and weight loss programs have been undermined in low-income minority communities because of a need to focus on basic survival issues. Less recess at school, the lack of safe and well-equipped recreation centers, and few to no grocery stores in some communities have made keeping adequately fit a greater challenge.
The Foundation's program will target African American and Latino families in low-income areas, especially in Wards 7 and 8 of the District, through posters on Metrobuses and Metrorail's green line, ads in a number of community newspapers, including the Washington Informer and El Pregonero, and public service announcements on several radio stations, including WPGC-FM and WLZL-FM. The campaign will offer a free healthy living directory, listing local resources that focus on nutrition, recreation and related services. All communications are in English and Spanish.