Johnson C. Smith Univeristy Wellness Department, NC 28216, USA
Title: ACT NOW! Creating Healthier Lifestyles for Tomorrow’s Leaders: A Youth Health Empowerment program
Biography: Victor Romano
Over the last three decades obesity has doubled with the highest numbers seen in African Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans. Minorities and low-income children are disproportionately affected by childhood obesity when compared to Caucasian children. The ACT NOW! Creating Healthier Lifestyles for Tomorrow’s Leaders project is designed to address chronic health issues predominantly in African Americans and Hispanics communites to provide a nutrition and physical activity based intervention that will have an overall positive impact on participants’ eating habits, physical activity levels, and health literacy. ACT NOW! incorporates aspects of JCSU’s established Seed to Feed: A Youth Sustainable Food Project which has been shown to decrease junk food consumption by 34.10%, 70.3% increase in participants who helped prepared a meals at home, and 196.52% increase in common gardening knowledge. ACT NOW will integrate the American Council on Exercise’s (ACE) Operation FitKids Curriculum and Seed to Feed and developed a comprehensive curriculum that integrates health-based curriculum in public, private and charter schools. The Operational FitKids Curriculum is designed to promote youth fitness in schools through physical education and activity. ACT NOW! caters to a large population of African Americans and Hispanics through school curriculum integration in the areas of health and science in Title I schools.