Community Health Education Youth The continuous increase in obesity cases in the country poses a big challenge to health educators and practitioners. The recent technological advancements and global economic competition have brought dramatic changes to the way people live, leading many to a sedentary life…
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Particularly, in Los Angeles, more than one in five students in Grades 5th, 7th and 9th were found to be obese (ibid.). This truth puts the youth at risk of obesity. This paper addresses the present problem by proposing a community health education plan for parents of at-risk and obese youth in Los Angeles. First, the paper tackles the present problem based on recent statistics and community health analysis. Second, it proposes a comprehensive education plan aimed at parents to guide them in child weight management. Third, it suggests relevant research to control the obesity situation in the Los Angeles community. The health education program shall run for six months, and a monthly assessment should be done to note down the improvements not only in the weight of the population but likewise in their eating habits and view of nutrition. The program shall include nutritional information, cooking sessions, exercise drills, activity planning, school and house-to-house visits, and follow up sessions. The objectives of the program are as follows: To provide information on obesity, its causes and effects, and other related information To improve the eating and cooking habits of families by conducting cooking sessions, information campaign, and school/home visits To increase the physical activity and exercise habits of the community by conducting physical exercise, teaching them how to plan and monitor their children’s physical activities, and providing means for physical activity among the youth To inculcate the value of health and good nutrition among the youth by holding poster-making contests, rhythmic gymnastics, and other forms of exercise. The participants shall be composed of parents and children. Mothers and fathers are both welcome to attend the activities, which shall be held for two hours every Saturday morning and may extend in the afternoon, to give way for other activities such as contests, exercise, and other physical activities for children. The success of implementing a health education program depends on proper planning and assessment. Thus, in order to achieve success, an analysis of the target population and Los Angeles county based on Windshield Survey must be conducted first. A Windshield Survey of Los Angeles primarily shows that it is a well-populated county. It is home to different ethnicities including African-Americans, Latinos, Whites, and Asians. In a research conducted in 2001 (cited in County of Los Angeles Department of Health and Services, 2003), it was found out that 55 percent of the county’s population is either overweight or obese, and many others are at risk for becoming overweight. Similarly, more than 15 percent of the adolescent population is overweight. African-Americans were found to have the highest incidence of obesity, and the problem is mostly related to low economic status (OHAE, 2007). Thus, the highest prevalence of obesity was noted among families with the lowest incomes. The relation between poverty and obesity suggests the poor nutrition that families can afford. Families with low income usually feed their children with starch and carbohydrates, which is opposite the daily nutritional recommendation of five servings of fruits and vegetables and little fat. In this regard, it is important to include in the health education seminar the proper nutrition or recommended foods that parents should provide their children. This topic should be included in Day 1. The first session should
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