Partner Spotlight: Students Lead the Charge for Food & Fitness
October 29, 2010 | Written By: Healthy Schools Campaign
Mikva students at the Go for the Gold launch on Aug. 17
Students are advocating for change and making Go for the Gold a reality. Mikva Challenge is a non-profit organization dedicated to challenging high school students throughout Chicago to be active participants in the political process through elections, activism and policy-making programs. Mikva is a critical partner in Go for the Gold.
Check out a podcast created by Mikva students:
In this podcast, teen leaders from the Mikva Challenge teen health council warn their peers not to ignore the statistics — one in three children and teens are obese or overweight — and then pointedly ask, “What can you do to make sure your school can be healthier?” The teen health council urges their peers to get their ideas together and strongly encourages their school principal to sign up for the Go for the Gold challenge.
These remarkable students are leading the charge to make this year the healthiest for their schools. The teen health council has been working throughout the summer in preparation to help their high schools “Go for the Gold” and meet the high standards for food, fitness and nutrition education set by the HealthierUS School Challenge. They surveyed over 300 Chicago youth about their schools’ wellness environment, spoke with experts on childhood obesity, and based on this research, the teen health council developed over 100 recommendations to help principals make healthy changes.
Students created a toolkit for their high school principals to use in making change to meet the challenge; at a special breakfast they hosted for principals, students presented the toolkit and spoke about why healthy eating and opportunities for physical activity matter at school. Students even met with USDA Deputy Administrator Audrey Rowe, who oversees programs such as the HealthierUS School Challenge, to share their vision for making high schools healthier places and to learn more about how young people can help. Principals at five high schools committed to take on the challenge this year with the students' continued involvement and support.
Kudos to these student leaders! How are students in your community taking part in the movement for healthy schools?