We recently celebrated the news that obesity rates for children have been dropping nationwide. A Journal of the American Medical Association study indicated researchers saw a 43% decline in obesity rates for children ages two to five over a ten-year period. Obesity rates for this age group saw a decline from 13.9% to 8.4% between 2003-2004 and 2011-2012.
That is great news and of course, involved the work of many people, from parents and educators to public health and education professionals. The work and to provide healthy food to children and families is an ongoing effort.
We know that access to healthy, nutritious food at a young age is key to growing into a healthy, successful adult. We know too that many children in our schools do not get adequate food, especially outside of the classroom, which is one of the major impediments to learning during the school day.
I am delighted to share information regarding, OASIS'CATCH Healthy Habits a multigenerational program that encourages healthy eating and active living. Teams of volunteers aged 50 and over, right here in Madison work with children in after-school and summer programs for up to 25 sessions. Each one-hour session includes a nutrition lesson, a healthy snack, and 30 minutes of physical activity. We are one of 19 cities around the country involved in this project.
Both volunteers and the young participants benefit from this great partnership and enjoy their time together as well. This program is just one of many aimed at not just reducing obesity rates but improving the health of children and families. I am grateful for the participation of hundreds of adults in this effort and look forward to hearing more great results.
You can learn more by watching this video or feel free to call Laura Bibo at the Madison Senior Center 608-267-8673.