Evaluation of the supervisor's efforts against obesity in children
Currently the municipality of Vejle is carrying out a 3-year intervention project starting in January 2008, aiming at overweight children and their families. Based on financial support from the National Board of Health is the main objective to develop models to prevent and treat obesity.
RICH stands for the evaluation of the 3-year project in which general and specific interventions in relation to studies of the effects achieved as well as initiated processes are highlighted.
The project can be divided into two, a general and a specific action.
The general effort
The aim is through early detection of overweight among the 2 ½ - 3 ½ year old children and their parents to prevent obesity. The success criterion is a reduction of 50% in the number of obese children at their school start. The aim is also that families gain useful knowledge about diet and exercise and that families acquire competence to act in order to change habits in their everyday life in relation to diet and exercise. These success criteria are sought for by the following activities:
Nurses carry out interviews on health, diet and exercise with parents of children 2 ½ years of age or 1½ year after the last ordinary counselling with pre school nurses
Parental training at 4 evening courses and 3 themes considering diet / exercise / the bringing up of children is also offered.
Collaboration with general practitioners in relation to the 3 year examination in which doctors can refer to the above series of courses.
The evaluation of the efficacy of the overall effort is measured in relation to the monitoring of child health (see Health Management template for evaluation at baseline, p. 13). This is done specifically by following the development of pre school children’s BMI, waist circumference and fat percentages as well as by high lightening any changes in physical activity and diet.
The process evaluation will primarily seek to identify the barriers for beginning or maintain a healthy family lifestyle, focusing on the involved families starting points and attitudes.
The specific interventions
The specific efforts are directed towards already overweight children and their parents. The effort consists of the following phases:
* initial visitation
* motivating talk with the parents and children in order to conduct activities around diet and physical activity
* follow-up for the purpose of long-term anchoring of new habits.
The purpose of the evaluation of the specific part of the project contains both process and outcome evaluation in relation to the project success criteria:
* that the family is aware of the health problems of obesity, the cause of obesity, the benefits of a change of lifestyle and parental responsibility for children's health,
* that families gain skills to act in relation to a healthier lifestyle in terms of insight, commitment, vision and experience
* to which degree they have translated these skills into action and lifestyle change (more physically active, healthier diet, etc..)
* that children actually loose weight and become more physically fit and to which extent the children are physically active in sports-clubs