National School-Based Health Care Announces February Awareness Month Across U.S.

As the epidemic of childhood obesity continues to remain problematic across the United States, organizations have increased awareness efforts for parents and students. Juvenile diabetes and childhood obesity has increased five times the number of kids who are overweight as compared with 1974; just thirty years ago. According to the most recent studies by the American Heart Association, there were 23.9 million children between the ages of 2 and 19 last year who were overweight, including just over 30% girls and 33% boys. In households that were considered low income, this was especially predominant.

The National Assembly on School Based Health Care (NASBHC) has designated February as the national awareness month again. Their goal is to redefine health for students and children throughout the schools. Among their topics, they

There’s no question that healthy practices begin at home, but the school systems also need to work collectively to bring healthier options to the cafeterias. That’s why this important program must be addressed throughout our Louisiana communities, as we do live in a state in which many children have these important health issues to be discussed. In fact, Louisiana ranked as the second leading state for obesity in the entire country in 2013, according to a report that was recently released by America’s Health Rankings.

As part of NASBHC Awareness Month, kids are encouraged to share their stories, challenges and successes from last February’s awareness campaign. Students can send a story, poem, photos or video clips for a chance to win $200. They also have a number of scheduled activities that teachers can bring to the classroom or that parents and students can participate in, individually.

The NASBHC was founded in 1995 as a national voice for school based health centers. They have been advocates in improving the health of kids – from toddler stages to teenagers – throughout Louisiana and the U.S.