Regional summit to tackle childhood obesity

This week the Mid North Coast will take a good hard look at itself in the mirror in an effort to come up with ways to beat the pervasiveness of childhood chub.

The inaugural Mid North Coast Regional Obesity Summit will bring together health leaders from across the state to work towards reducing childhood obesity in the region.

Almost a quarter of NSW children are overweight or obese.

Children who are overweight or obese are likely to stay obese into adulthood and are more likely to develop chronic diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular diseases at a younger age.

The Regional Obesity Summit, to be held at The Glasshouse Port Macquarie this Thursday, November 16, is being coordinated by Healthy Communities Mid North Coast, a collective regional action and advocacy group formed in early 2017 to build a regional leadership model for preventive health on the Mid North Coast.

Summit attendees will include local and state government representatives, health leaders, policymakers, academics, leaders of local government and community-based organisations, health care providers and community members.

NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant will be a keynote speaker at the summit.

“Through the formation of Healthy Communities Mid North Coast, and the hosting of this Regional Obesity Summit, the Mid North Coast Local Health District is showing real commitment to the achievement of the NSW Premier’s priority to reduce childhood overweight and obesity by five per cent by 2025,” Dr Chant said.

“It is an ambitious target, so we really need health, government and community organisations in regional areas to step up and take a leadership role to ensure we are able to achieve it.”

The summit will commence with a morning walk at 6.30am, led by the Indigenous Marathon Foundation Running and Walking (IMF RAW) group.

The morning session of the summit, from 8.30am to 1pm, is open to anyone with an interest in the health of children and young people. To register to attend the morning session, visit the Health Community Mid North Coast website.

The afternoon session, for invited local and state health leaders, will work on a regional action plan for preventing and reducing childhood overweight and obesity in the Mid North Coast area.