by Virginia Sowers, ChildFund Community Manager
with reporting by Christine Ennulat, ChildFund International
This week marks the one-year anniversary of the U.S. government’s “Let’s Move!” campaign, spearheaded by First Lady Michelle Obama.
The campaign offers concrete ideas for helping parents, schools and communities improve the nutrition of children. In addition, the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 authorizes funding for federal school meal and child nutrition programs and increases access to healthy food for low-income children.
The measures Mrs. Obama’s efforts have set in motion will take some time to come to fruition. Yet, awareness is increasing of the problems associated with child obesity and action steps are under way.
Children themselves are leading change in their own small ways, through planting gardens, blending exercise with education and getting hands-on kitchen experiences.
Within our U.S. programs, ChildFund is helping children, youth, families and communities to increase their food security as well as their knowledge base about health and nutrition. Working alongside partners already in the communities, ChildFund is focusing on community and youth engagement approaches to hunger, proper nutrition and physical fitness. Rather than simply providing services — giving young people bicycles, for example — ChildFund adds value by engaging beneficiaries from different angles: training the youth on bicycle maintenance as well as healthy exercise and diet.
Momentum is building to help children lead healthier lives. Let’s keep it moving.