CHILDCARE NEWSLETTER June 2009 WELCOME I am excited to announce that the Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa's (HSFSA) Children’s Programme has reached over 2 million children countrywide. The Health Promotion Officers are successfully providing educational material and training to teachers and parents, focusing on an array of topics from heart health, nutrition, exercise, basic hygiene, HIV/AIDS and Rheumatic Fever. I had the privilege to accompany the Officers and our mascot Hearty to two crèches for the distribution of beanies to aid in fighting the winter chill. It is always rewarding to see that kids appreciate the beanies and our health talk. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the beanie knitters. You did a great job and the kids and the HSFSA are grateful for your constant help to create a cozy and warm winter for the children. I would like to wish our Health Promotion Officers and crèches the best of luck in all their endeavours over the next few months. Yours in good health, Robert de Souza CEO: The Heart and Stroke Foundation SA Hi All, It has been a very busy and fruitful year thus far. The Health Promotion Officers are doing very well nationally. They reported on their involvement with 'Hearty visits' to schools, fun days and sports days in their respective regions. They also participatd in wellness days and addressed parents at various PTA meetings, emphasizing the importance of cultivating healthy eating habits from a young age. Hearty greetings, Helen Rolls HOD: Children’s Programme Tel: 021 447 4222 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Regional Updates Western Cape: The Childcare Department was very busy over the past months and was involved in a number of different events. WORLD CANCER DAY On February 4, 2009 we celebrated World Cancer Day at Mamre Primary School. A health talk by our dietitian, Ayesha Seedat allowed the children and their care givers to be educated on how to live a healthy lifestyle. The Health Promotion Officers and Hearty supported Ayesha's information and contributed to an educational outing. LUCKY STAR PROGRAMME Beauty made her Lucky Star debut along the West Coast area. She will be in charge of the Lucky Star Programme and has successfully added 10 new members to the Programme. We hope to increase the members and with that, reach more children countrywide. INTERNATIONAL FAMILY DAY On the weekend of 15 May the Department of Social Development hosted an expo for the International Family Day. We had the opportunity to be part of the expo and with that create awareness around the HSFSA and mostly create awareness for our Children’s Programmes. It was a great success and a wonderful experience to be able to talk and influence families to live healthy lifestyles. KIDDIES SPORTS DAY Hearty made his sporting appearance at the Kiddies Sport's day organised by the Khayaletisha Educare Forum on the 22 May. It was a day filled with fun, sporty activities and awareness around healthy fit lifestyles. COLOURING BOOKS The Childcare Department is currently working on a new colouring book. The book is aimed at the ages 3 to 4 years. It is in our best interest to educate children from a young age, the new colouring book will allow us to reach the little ones and thus educate them. BEANIES With winter around the corner Hearty, the Childcare Department and Robert went on a little road trip to visit crèches in Mamre and to deliver beanies. The crèches included L'Amour Martinelle and Mamre Moravian Pre-Primary. We reached about 200 children with our distribution of beanies in Mamre, but would like to increase the numbers in the future. Kwa-Zulu Natal: COMMUNITY ACKNOWLEDGEMENT FOR CHILDREN’S PROGRAMME The KZN region is very proud of Yvonne Luvuno, our Health Promotion Officer, who received a trophy in honor of the excellent Lucky Star Children’s Programme, that she is responsible for the Umlazi District. The Principal, Miss Gumede of Mzomuhle Primary School based in Umlazi, presented the trophy to Yvonne at a school assembly on Wednesday, 13 May 2009. The school has an enrolment of 1000 learners and 25 educators. Since the Children’s Programme has been implemented in this school, the Principal, educators and learners have developed a beautiful vegetable garden. The vegetables provide a healthy meal for the learners . The dedication and commitment from the principal, educators and learners is overwhelming and demonstrates the integral part of the Children’s Programme in bringing about healthy lifestyle changes. MAKING SCHOOLS CENTRES OF SUSTAINABILITY WORKSHOP The region was privileged to be part of a workshop, 'MAKING SCHOOL’S CENTRES OF SUSTAINABILITY', organised by the University of Kwa Zulu Natal, Development Studies Unit and the eThekwini Imagine Durban Schools Project. We presented a power point presentation to the HOD’s and educators from over 20 schools in the KZN Region. Also present, were service providers Umgeni Water, eThekwini Health, Department of Education and Training and members of the Green Revolution Organisation. It was evident from the speakers that families and communities will be influenced in the choices they make as a result of changes that are taking place within their children and their schools . The Children’s Programme was well received by all those present. The lifestyle changes with regards to healthy eating, exercising regularly, refraining from smoking , through to the Children’s Programme has had a ripple effect to many of the communities. The HSFSA's , Sow-a-Seed Programme encourages all schools present to engage in a vegetable garden so that the learners and the communities can benefit from the fields. Dana Govender and Yvonne Luvuno Health Promotion Officers Tel: 031 261 9055 Email: email@example.com Eastern Cape: Toys received fromthe Toy Run were given to a crèche in Zwide, Port Elizabeth. The children and staff were very excited and overwhelmed by the new toys. Lucky Star is still promoted in visits to the rural areas. This year, Thornhill, Loerie, Hankey, Grahamstown and Port Alfred were visited. Visits to crèches and schools in the city and surrounding area, still continue with follow up visits, book deliveries and workshops. Hearty has visited crèches in Malabar (4), Forest Hill (1), Uitenhage (2), St Albans(1), Green Bushes (1). Hearty is very popular and a welcome change to meet and hug the mascot that the children learn about. Preparation for the “Early Learning Expo 2009” has begun and I attended the first meeting with the Department of Health and their stakeholders. This year, the expo will be held in Kwa Dwesi/Kwa Magwaxi area, during the first week in August. Children from New Brighton, Joe Slovo among others, will attend. This is the fourth year this expo will take place and we have been a part of it with our mascot Hearty and little puppet Hearty for the short lessons taught every year. Marcia Witbooi Health Promotions Officer Tel: 041 582 4086 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Guide your Child to Healthy Eating Habits Protecting your children's health should be every parent or care-giver's first priority. The Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa (HSFSA) encourages parents to provide kids with a well-balanced diet to ensure they receive the correct amount of nutrients which is vital for proper growth and development. A child who is brought up in an environment where healthy eating habits are upheld is more likely to carry these practices well into adulthood. Ayesha Seedat, Registered Dietitian at the HSFSA says that about 70% of obese adolescents grow up to be obese adults. The HSFSA recommends the Food Pyramid for helpful guidelines which will assist in achieving a healthy diet. Starches like bread, cereal, rice, pasta and potatoes should form the base in every meal and 7-8 servings are recommended per day. Children will receive a large source of energy from these foods which will increase their concentration and assist in providing energy for playground activities. Fruit and vegetables provide vitamins and minerals and are an important supply of fibre which helps the digestive system function at its best. The HSFSA advises you to use various fruits and vegetables when preparing meals. Four to five servings should be eaten daily to assist children in building and maintain a healthy immune system. Milk products give children the calcium they need in order to develop strong bones which will aid them in playground or other injuries. The HSFSA advises parents and care-givers to shop smartly by choosing low-fat or fat-free dairy products. No more than 2-3 servings of dairy products. Protein can be found in meat and meat substitutes which also assist growth. It is recommended that 2 or less meat products are eaten each day. Fats and sweets are to be consumed in the smallest quantities. Recommended fats and oil servings of no more than 2-3 per day. For sweets, allow no more than 5 servings per week. It is important that your child grows up loving all foods while being mindful of the portion sizes and nutritional value. To enjoy a healthy life in their future, they need your guiding hand to steer them in the most nutritious direction. For further information, contact the Heart Mark Diet Line on 0860 223 222 and speak to a registered dietitian for further advice.