15th May 2012
Jazzed-up healthy living message is hitting home
Action Cancer’s Health Action programme is reaching more children and young people than ever with its health living message.
Nursery children right up to college students can now take part in the programme, which has already reached more than 420,000 children in Northern Ireland since 2003.
And this number is set to rise as a result of more children of all ages and even parents getting in on the act, hearing about healthy lifestyle messages that could prevent illness and cancer in later life.
Siblings Kaci (5), Demi Lee (8) and Curtis Hurley (10), pupils at Woodlawn Primary School, Carrick, have all taken part in Action Cancer’s health promotion puppet show, which is aimed at younger children and delivered by the Health Action team. A newly designed puppet show was launched in 2011, heralding the arrival of two brightly coloured puppets called Mambo and Jazz.
These ‘Health Action Heroes’ help nursery and young children learn about four golden rules to keep healthy; eat well, exercise regularly, be safe in the sun and be aware of the dangers of smoking.
Parents of nursery children can also learn about how to make up healthy lunch boxes for their children, with older children and college students learning about the main healthy lifestyle messages in an age appropriate way, involving educational DVDs, food talks, and even a Boxercise class.
Emily Magrath, health promotion manager at Action Cancer said: “Our new puppet show has been a huge success so far, with Mambo and Jazz letting younger children know in a fun and interactive way about causes of poor health. Whilst the health promotion principles have remained the same for the programme over the years, we have continuously innovated and brought the messages to an ever increasing range of ages and groups, in ways that each age group can relate to – particularly as the incidence of health risks like obesity increase.”