I’m sad to announce that this is my last issue of the Inside Track, as I am heading to the Alliance for American Manufacturing to serve as director of digital media. While I am excited for this new opportunity, this is a very bittersweet moment. It has been incredibly rewarding to be at the helm of the Inside Track over the past three years.
When my colleagues and I launched the newsletter in 2011, PreventObesity.net consisted of a few hundred Leaders and perhaps a few thousand Supporters. But momentum was building, as people across the country were ready to come together to create a healthier future for our nation’s kids. The PreventObesity.net team knew there were so many Leaders like you who had worked for years to reduce childhood obesity, and we wanted to empower your efforts.
The Inside Track was designed to spread the word about the great work PreventObesity.net Leaders are doing and play a role in connecting them. Over the years, I’ve been lucky to interview Leaders from across the country working on an eclectic mix of causes to help kids eat healthier and move more. All of your stories are inspiring and heartwarming, and I am so lucky that I got to hear so many of them.
PreventObesity.net’s first major advocacy campaign took place around the time of the Inside Track’s launch, when the U.S. Department of Agriculture was considering the rule to create healthier nutritional standards for school meals. Because of the work of Leaders like you, school meals across the country are now healthier than ever before. School snacks and beverages also will soon be improved, and the USDA could soon ban the marketing of junk food in schools.
Of course, the fight over school food never seems to end – as the movement continues to create Safe Routes to School, improve opportunities for young people to be physically active, reduce consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, increase healthy food access in underserved communities and protect children from unhealthy food and beverage marketing.
But I am confident that with Leaders like you working on these vital issues, progress will continue. PreventObesity.net now consists of more than 3,500 Leaders and nearly 300,000 Supporters, and momentum continues to build toward a healthier future.
Please continue to send your story ideas and comments to my friend and colleague Prarthana Gurung via [email protected] I know that the important work of this movement will continue in the years to come, and I’m excited to see what great things you accomplish next.
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Leaders are people who are actively working - either professionally or as volunteers - to change policies and environments to help children eat better and be more active. We use the following criteria to evaluate whether to approve an applicant for Leader status with the Voices for Healthy Kids Action Center.
Do you meet the criteria below? If so, register as a Leader here. There is no cost to be a Leader.
At least one item must be checked within each of the following two categories:
1. Applicant is focused on changing policies and environments
They are working on one of Voices for Healthy Kid's six issue areas:
Ensure foods and beverages in schools meet dietary guidelines
Expand community access to high quality food
Expand physical activity programs in and out of school
Improve built environment in communities to increase physical activity
Use pricing strategies to promote purchase of healthier foods
Use regulation/policy to reduce youth exposure to unhealthy food marketing
They are working on other obesity-related issues, such as:
Their primary focus is working on individual behavior (e.g., teaching kids about food, play, etc.), but they have access to organizations that could provide opportunities to change environments, such as
Public Health Agencies
Their project is commercial, but contributes positively to changing policies and environments, such as:
2. Applicant is organizing others or contributing to organizing efforts
They are organizing others by:
Providing volunteer opportunities
Building contact lists of supporters to engage in advocacy
They provide support to organizations or leaders doing work changing policies and environments, such as:
They are a leader in a governmental body that may be the target of organizing efforts to change policies and environments, such as a:
Federal or state agency
Mayor or other local executive office
Federal, state, county or local public health department
Federal, state, county or transportation department
Federal, state or local education agency or school board
If the applicant claims to work for an organization, at least one item must be checked below:
3. Applicant works for an organization:
Has an email address that matches the domain of the organization they list
Is listed on the organization website as staff
The Voices for Healthy Kids Action Center is looking for bloggers who can write about issues that matter to our community on a regular basis. If you would like to be considered for this network, please check this box.
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