Healthy Kids Festival: Low Cost, Small Steps that Make a Big Fat Difference
American Public Health Association Annual Conference
There has been a significant increase, from 5.0% to 12.1%, in the number of preschool children in the U.S. who are obese. Young children are more difficult to reach and deliver health information to as some have not yet started formal education. Community health fairs and festivals can be an effective way to reach hundreds of people with very little or no funding. September is National Childhood Obesity Prevention Month and to raise awareness the Healthy Kids Festival was developed to reach parents and children ages 2-5, target Latino and low-income populations, and educate about obesity prevention in Las Vegas. The inaugural event was held in September. The main goal of the festival was to aggressively engage participants and have children leave with hands-on tools regarding physical activity and nutrition that could be immediately implemented and reproduced. Therefore, a passport was created to ensure that every child visited every booth and did not receive a stamp until a hands-on nutrition lesson or a physical activity was completed. Vendors offered many activities such as: yoga, Zumba, dance instruction, and planting and tasting new fruits and vegetables. Attendance and involvement was very high for an inaugural event with a total of 1071 participants, 22 booths, and support from 2 local politicians, including one who spoke at the event. Tips will be given on how to create a successful event on a minimal budget including how to engage stakeholders and policy makers, find community partners, conduct effective evaluation, and will discuss lessons learned.
Children's health; Obesity
Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Public Health
Healthy Kids Festival: Low Cost, Small Steps that Make a Big Fat Difference.
American Public Health Association Annual Conference, 2013