Posted by Melody Barnes, Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy on May 11, 2010
Today, the Childhood Obesity Task Force is excited to release our action plan to solve the problem of childhood obesity within a generation. The First Lady will be holding a press conference this morning to talk about the report, and you can tune in and watch it live at 10:30AM EDT right in this blog post or at http://www.whitehouse.gov/live. And make sure to take a look at the report HERE! It will serve as a roadmap for the work we need to do together to make sure that our kids grow up healthy and have the opportunity to live active lives.
On a gentle south-facing slope in Corvallis, Oregon, twenty Latino families gather to tend plots at the Westside Community Garden.
East Omaha includes a sizeable economically distressed area. Poverty rates and obesity among the youth are high and access to healthy food is a problem for those who need it most.
Within a 2 mile radius of the Peaches 'n Greens location, there are 24 liquor stores and one grocery store.
The Philadelphia Chapter of HOPE Worldwide, an international charity which delivers sustainable, high-impact, community-based services to the poor and needy, expanded their youth mentoring program and character building program called Saturday Academy to include Healthy Lifestyles Initiative. One of their goals was to educate and motivate children on the importance of health, physical activity and life skills. Their goal: to prevent obesity later in life. The Department of Education Physical Education Program offered anchor funding and an AmeriCorps grant from the Corporation for National and Community Service provided up to 40 members to serve as program assistants and mentors.
The Coordinated Approach To Child Health (CATCH) Program has been implemented in 7,500 schools and after school programs across North America. CATCH is a mentor partnership, where parents, educators, and caregivers work together to promote physical activity and healthy food choices, as well as preventing tobacco use in children from preschool through grade 8.
For the past seven years, Lynda Carville and her staff in the Baton Rouge Roman Catholic Diocese Child Nutrition Program have carefully and systematically put together one of the finest school lunch programs in the country. USDA's School Nutrition Program provides vital assistance in defraying the cost for the program, but it is the commitment and caring of Mrs. Carville and her staff of 190 that make the difference.
Chances are you would not expect to find hand-made quiche, pasta sauce made with roasted local chicken, and hot house plum tomatoes from farms in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley in a school food program. D.C. Central Kitchen and their catering company, Fresh Start, are using their know-how and local food connections to provide freshly prepared meals for 71 "at risk" boys at the Washington Jesuit Academy.
FAME Episcopal Church partnered with local schools to provide a Let's Move Carnival. The carnival focused on factors that lead to childhood obesity targeting teachers and students during the school lunch hour. Local and state officials, other faith leaders, and members of the community were invited to attend.
In synagogues, day schools, and other Jewish institutions, students are busy sprouting seeds, grinding wheat berries into whole wheat flour, cooking dinner for their families, planting gardens and learning how Jewish tradition both informs and inspires healthy food choices.