Here’s Why Children Need CHOICES
Health officials around the world are encouraging more physical activity and better nutrition as ways to combat childhood obesity. For many years it was perceived that obesity was simply about overeating. Through research we have learned that it is really about the changing times of technology, diminished safe places for children to play, the bombardment of fast food marketing and the lack of healthy meal choices in schools. If children are to become healthier, we must all start working as a team.
Our program strategy at C.H.O.I.C.E.S. is designed to be multifaceted. We believe that no single strategy in itself will be successful. Through collaborative partnerships with fitness trainers, physical and psychological health professionals, motivational speakers and dietitians, C.H.O.I.C.E.S. is a resource to families with overweight and obese children. The Center’s aim is to provide a safe, supportive environment for clinically diagnosed and at risk children of obesity, with the inclusion of their parents through the following program components:
Designed to increase awareness, inform, educate, and train participants to make physical activity a normal and necessary part of their daily activity. The “C.H.O.I.C.E.S. 8-Week Fitness Challenge” program, consisting of cardio exercise, group exercise and nutrition planning was designed specifically for children and their families.
Designed to establish the link between the consumption of food and its effect on mind and body. The Center provides weekly learning lessons to Increase knowledge in the areas of food choices and consumption. As part of the Choices Support Group, we also discuss better food preparation and diversity.
Inclusion is the key! Participants can enjoy a number of group activities, social outings and interactive discussions to create a healthy atmosphere for peers with common challenges and common goals.
The impact and attraction of technology to the youth culture is enormous. The Center utilizes this powerful medium to reinforce lessons learned, provide parental tips and communicate as a team.
Talking helps! Sharing one-on-one or within a group setting provides a vehicle to discuss challenges, offer encouragement and share accomplishments. The Choices Support Group reinforces the simple theme: Together we can make a difference in the lives of others and ourselves.
The Center puts forth great effort to raise awareness within the community about obesity and healthier living by joining with other organizations. In the near future we will expand our direction to include making institutional intervention and policy changes.