Camp FRESH: An innovative approach to improving risk factors for at-risk adolescents
Tuesday, November 3, 2015
Urban adolescents are at risk for cardiovascular disease, sexual and mental health issues and challenges with nutrition. Camp FRESH (Fresh Resources Everyone Should Have) aims to increase teens' knowledge and teach the tools to make healthy lifestyle changes, while empowering them to share health messages with their families, peers and community. Camp FRESH educates teens on how to improve nutrition, increase physical activity, identify mental health issues and make informed sexual health choices. In 2014, 48 teens completed the Camp FRESH program; an additional 70 (parents, siblings, extended family and guardians) participated in programming, health screenings, grocery store tours, and lectures on stress reduction and making healthy nutritional choices. Teens participate in discussions on health, and how to share healthy messages with their families and peers; teens also serve as mentors for elementary-aged children; and participate in physical activity including yoga, flag football, swimming and volleyball. Camp FRESH staff measure improvement in teens’ knowledge and behavior change by assessing health knowledge through a pre-/post-survey; staff also track changes in weight and BMI through periodic screenings during the 8-week program. Since 2007, Camp Fresh has reached over 1000 teens and families. Through Camp FRESH, we have demonstrated success in developing and sustaining an innovative, adolescent health improvement model, specifically targeting an underserved population. This benefits the health of the participant and the family – and ultimately, public health. We suggest it can be replicated and scaled-up in other health system settings as an example of impactful community-based, public health programming.
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Describe need for health education programs in Wilmington, Delaware
List the areas of focus in Camp FRESH which meet the needs of teens
Demonstrate the need for flexibility within the program to adapt to teens ever-changing needs
Discuss successes and opportunities of the progran
Keyword(s): Children and Adolescents, Health Promotion and Education
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have 9 years experience in sexual health education, health program coordination and have been closely involved with qualitative research and publication with a colleague from the University of Delaware. Among my interests have been developing a sexual health curriculum modifed to reach LGBTQ teens.
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.