Online Program

Healthy kids festival: Low cost, small steps that make a big fat difference

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Lisa Coker, MPH, CHES, School of Community Health Sciences, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Las Vegas, NV
Anne Lindsay, MS, Cooperative Extension, University of Nevada , Reno, Las Vegas, NV
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.

Learning Areas:

Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Design a successful, low-cost childhood obesity prevention festival targeting low-income young children and adults. Discuss effective and non-effective methods of planning an obesity awareness event in Las Vegas.

Keyword(s): Children's Health, Obesity

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am Letter of Appointment as an Obesity Prevention Specialist and I am a Doctoral student. I designed, implemented, and evaluated the Healthy Kids Festival.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.