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Green Prescriptions helping young people get more active

Green Prescriptions helping young people get more active
July 16, 2016

The latest survey report on New Zealand’s Green Prescription Active Families initiative shows that 87% of participating families found they had noticed positive changes, including their child or young person having more energy and more confidence, as well as sleeping better.

Welcoming the Survery Report, which covers the year to April 2016, New Zealand Health Minister Jonathan Coleman stated “more children and young people taking part in Active Families are seeing the benefits of eating healthy food and being active.

“The lifestyle changes are also being sustained over time for the majority of children and young people which is a great result.”

Green Prescription Active Families programmes are community-based initiatives designed to increase physical activity in children and young people aged five to 18, and their family.

Dr Coleman added “the programme helps families make sustainable changes through encouragement, education, nutritional guidance and advice, realistic goal setting and on-going support.

“Younger family members may now be referred to the programme through the new Raising Healthy Kids health target which is part of the Government’s Childhood Obesity Plan.”

The latest Green Prescription Active Families Survey Report found:

• 76% of participating families said their child or youth spent more time being active since their referral, and this increase was sustained over time for three quarters of participants referred last year. 
• The main changes noted by families included their child or youth having more energy, feeling stronger and fitter, and more confident. Many also noticed their child or youth had lost weight, felt better, and slept better.

As of June this year, just over 1,000 children, young people and their families had been referred to the programme. Nearly half of participating children, 46%, were from low income families.

The Green Prescription Active Families Survey Report for July 2015 to April 2016 is available on the Ministry of Health website, www.health.govt.nz

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