How we are battling against Child Obesity
We’ve all seen splashed over the news the alarming headlines about Child Obesity and the startling statistics that, according to Public Health England, “Almost 60% more children in their last year of primary school are classified as ‘severely obese’ than in their first year” and “Just over a third of children who left primary school last year were overweight”.
The way that the issue has suddenly been thrust into the public eye would make anyone think that this problem has only recently arisen in the last few months – but in reality, this issue (which has been described as a ‘crisis’) has been growing for years - it’s sudden notoriety seems to be down to the fact that well-known celebrities, such as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Jamie Oliver, have been unremitting in their push for change and have refused to be ignored.
What are we doing?
Since our inception, we at Inspired Through Sport have made it one of our missions to try and get the nation’s children fit and healthy!
Whilst there are many areas that need addressing in order to get young people healthier, we have been battling this problem in three main ways; education, inspiration and creating opportunities for children to be active…
We deliver events in schools where, as part of our experience, we deliver ‘Healthy lifestyle’ workshops – we teach children all about nutrition and how staying active can not only make you healthier in body, but also in mind. Most children don’t really understand the impact that some of the food they are eating can have on their body and we want to equip them with the knowledge to make healthy choices.
Our events bring GB athletes into schools to inspire children to stay active, embrace sport and never give up on their dreams! We feel that simply telling young people to get active doesn’t have the most significant impact, we believe that instead we need to get them to want to take up sport themselves – and there’s no better way to do that then to hear from GB’s sporting heroes! We offer both paid and sponsored (free!) visits as we feel it’s important that this experience can be accessible to all schools.
Opportunities to stay active:
We always aim to make the messages of our events sustainable by ensuring that we create opportunities for children to stay active so that the enthusiasm that we inspire, isn’t lost. We do this in three ways: firstly, our sponsored school visits give the opportunity for schools to purchase new PE equipment as the students raise money for the event, and the funds are then split between our athlete support programme and their own school; secondly, we deliver after school clubs in football and athletics in London which engage children with regular sport; and finally, we run camps during every school holiday as we recognise that during these periods, children can end up going weeks without any sport or activity.
We know that child obesity is a complex issue and, just as it has been a problem that has developed over time, solving the issue will also be a slow process, but this is something that we’re hugely passionate about and intend to continue to fight one school at a time!