This year’s World Health Day is Sunday 7 April and has adopted the theme of ‘Universal Health’.
At Youth Off The Streets we consistently advocate for the health and well being of our young people. We believe that education is the key to breaking the cycle of disadvantage. With education our young people can be empowered to make healthier decisions leading to an overall healthier lifestyle.
Our independent school, The Lakes College, is running a nutritional program weekly where our young people can learn healthy skills such as good nutrition.
The program, titled The Wholesome Collective, is a four week program with only eight students in each group that are rotated.
The program covers health, nutrition, understanding finances and hygiene in the kitchen. It is run by a professional nutritionist Michael and a former home economics teacher, Mary, who was previously employed by Women’s Day and Taste magazine to publish a variety of recipes.
Youth Off The Streets staff member, John Martin, says the program has had a lasting impact on the health of their students.
“The benefits of providing healthier choices, such as food and activities, to our students in and outside the classroom have resulted in greater engagement and attendance,” said John. “Our students are motivated to take advantage of the opportunities around them and are now petitioning local council to provide greater access to outdoor gyms in order to improve social, physical and mental wellbeing for community members.”
A year 10 student also spoke of how the class has helped bring awareness of good nutrition to the class.
“Going into our health and nutrition class made me aware that I can make much healthier choices and that they don’t have to be expensive. I’ve now shown mum how to buy groceries and cook better meals together.”
The program has been received very well by the first group of students. The Lakes College will continue running this program to empower more of their young people to make healthy decisions.