Obesity InstituteIn 2008, our Board began informal talks with Dr. Denice Cora-Bramble about the need to begin an initiative to address child obesity in our community. We received a proposal and agreed to become a founding sponsor of the Obesity Institute at Children’s National Medical Center. We pledged a total of $500,000 over five years to help combat the crisis of obesity in the District of Columbia — where over 40 percent of the children are now overweight or obese. We are proud to lead the nation in helping to create innovative solutions to this crisis through effective and compassionate treatment, advocacy and public policy, research and education. Our commitment to combatting obesity parallels our multi-year commitment to the Children’s Health Advocacy Institute (CHAI) at Children’s National, of which we are founding sponsors as well. We chose to support these two important causes — fighting obesity and promoting advocacy — because they fulfill our mission, as evidenced by our long history of supporting both through our grants process. This formalized our commitment. Over many years prior to the pledge to the Obesity Institute, CHB has funded many grants that deal with the problem of overweight and obese children in our community, including the following:
Goldberg Center Obesity ClinicIn 2006, The Board invested $30,000 to support the use of three significant, proven components to help obese children with weight control: nutritional education, behavioral counseling and physical activity.
Shaw Health CenterIn 2006, The Board invested $8,260 to support the improvement of obesity related health education services.
Healthy School Summer SessionIn 2006, The Board invested $6,000 in support for children’s participation in nutrition, education and physical activity interventions, including food demonstrations, tours of grocery stores, trips to farmer’s markets and participation in the President’s Challenge Program.
Healthy Schools ProgramIn 2006, The Board invested $15,000 in the development of culturally competent nutrition and fitness, age-appropriate curricula adopted from the USDA Team Nutrition and the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports Health Fitness Award Program.
Food Labels: Implications on Obesity Management in the Primary Care SettingInvested $4,000 in the assessment of baseline knowledge and education of children and parents to enable them to read food labels and make healthy choices.
Small Steps to SuccessIn 2009, The Board invested $6,700 in the provision of nutritional, exercise and academic intervention and support for families of children between the ages of 11 to 17 who are affected by diabetes and display poor metabolic control.
Girls FitNut, Jr.The Board invested $15,000 in two Girls FitNut programs for patients at CNMC’s Southeast Children’s Health Centers and double the number of children and families served in the coming year. The program is a twice-weekly after school program that provides exercise and nutrition education for overweight middle school girls.
Smart Talk and Real SolutionsThe Board invested $21,690 in the development and implementation of a structured weight management and exercise program for obese participants currently patients at the Good Hope Road Health Center. This program targets Latino preschoolers, their parents, and their teachers and day care providers. So far, more than 300 parents, more than 300 preschoolers, and 50 some teachers have completed the program. Outcomes show significant improvement in nutrition, activity levels, parenting skills as well as reduction or stabilization of children’s weight, weight loss and decreased BMI in parents, and in teachers.
Step Up to Health DCIn 2011, The Board invested $13,560 in a holistic mind/body health program at the Washington Middle School for Girls that incorporates the “We Can” and “Media Smart” curriculum into their after-school club meetings. The program provides valuable experiences in teamwork, competition, community connections, and multi-generational mentoring. In addition, the girls learn about nutrition, making healthy choices whether dining in or out, and how food advertising claims/aims can be unhealthy. The girls also participate in discussions on body image, and the role the media plays in unrealistically depicting body types.
In the District of Columbia, over 40 percent of the children are now overweight or obese. We are proud to lead the nation in helping to create innovative solutions to this crisis through effective and compassionate treatment, advocacy and public policy, research and education.