When Mission Hospital set out to address childhood obesity in some of South Orange County’s neediest areas, organizers had their sights set on San Juan Capistrano, San Clemente and Dana Point.
But the most recent evaluation of needs has them scratching Dana Point off the list and adding Lake Forest.
“Due to newly identified areas of need in Lake Forest, Lake Forest was selected to be the third target city in place of Dana Point,” says a report the Capistrano Unified school board will hear tonight.
Mission Hospital has assembled a 70-plus-person task force to tackle childhood obesity, according to the report. While the program includes involving several schools in San Juan Capistrano and San Clemente, this year it will expand to Olivewood and Gates elementary schools, in the Saddleback Valley Unified School District.
“Baseline analysis of … results for school year 2010 indicate 41.6 percent of children in target schools are overweight or obese,” the report states.
Among the strategies in use are so-called lunch ‘n learn, when kids learn about nutrition and physical activity on their lunch hours; an “instant recess” DVD of activities; teacher training; obesity awareness assemblies for the morning flag ceremony; and using stickers to identify healthier food choice alternatives.