The Food In Our Schools Matters

by HCC

The Food In Our Schools Matters

CAMPAIGN AT A GLANCE

On September 7th 2022, the Healthy Caribbean Coalition (HCC) in partnership with regional and national partners launched a digital campaign titled #ActOnFacts: The Food in Our Schools Matters, to encourage public and policymaker support for policies that limit the sale and marketing of unhealthy foods and drinks in and around schools, while increasing the availability of nutritious foods, healthier snacks and drinking water.

The regional campaign features the slogan Policy can make a difference, to highlight the powerful role policy plays in shaping school food environments.

#ActOnFacts will run from September 7th to October 16th, 2022, across social and digital media platforms in CARICOM Member States, and is part of wider regional multi-sectoral, multi-stakeholder advocacy and communication efforts to promote healthy food environments for children.

Read/download the press release here.

Jump to the campaign resources.

The Food In Our Schools Matters

OUR PARTNERS
PAHO
OECS
CARPHA
FAO
Heart & Stroke Foundation of Barbados
Heart Foundation of Jamaica
JYAN
UNICEF
WHY THIS CAMPAIGN?

The health of our region is the wealth of our region. We need to invest in prevention policies which target our most precious resource – our children
Sir Trevor Hassell, President, Healthy Caribbean Coalition

The Food In Our Schools Matters
With one in three Caribbean children living with overweight and obesity, the region is on a dangerous trajectory towards a future with an even greater non-communicable disease (NCD) burden. NCDs such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer remain the leading causes of premature death in the Caribbean, and children living with overweight and obesity are more likely to develop NCDs at a younger age. Unhealthy diets dominated by ultra-processed foods (UPFs) high in sugar, fats and salt are the primary cause of childhood obesity and its related NCDs.

Early childhood is a critical time for obesity prevention, as eating habits established when young can last a lifetime. Children spend much of their time in school, yet across the Caribbean region, food and beverage offerings in schools largely consist of unhealthy, ultra-processed foods such as sweet drinks, cookies and other ‘junk foods’.

Our children deserve better. School food environments should promote good health and nutrition, and support students in making healthy food choices.

WHAT ARE WE TRYING TO ACHIEVE?
The Food In Our Schools Matters calls on governments to #ActOnFacts and implement strong school nutrition policies that allow and encourage children and the school community to make healthier food choices.

Addressing unhealthy food environments – and by extension childhood obesity – requires bold legislative actions, to not only increase access to nutritious foods, healthier snacks and drinking water, but limit the sale and marketing of unhealthy foods and drinks in schools.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

Governments and Policymakers: Invest in evidence based prevention policies. Allocate adequate budgets to support, implement, monitor and enforce school nutrition policies that include regulating the sale and marketing of unhealthy foods and drinks in schools, while increasing access to nutritious foods, healthier snacks and drinking water. These policies have been endorsed by CARICOM Heads of Government and recommended by WHO/PAHO, CARPHA, UNICEF, HCC, Ministries of Health and other key stakeholders.

HCC has launched three new publications focused on Regulating the Availability and Marketing of Unhealthy Beverages and Food Products in and around Schools in the Caribbean, you can access the summary here or all three publications here.

Parents and caregivers: Share the campaign materials with your networks. Recognise that policy plays a powerful role in creating environments that make the healthier choice, the easy choice. Talk to your child’s school administrators and your local policymakers in Ministries of Education and Health, about the need for strong, nutrition policies that allow and encourage children and the school community to make healthier food choices. Our children deserve better from schools.

CAMPAIGN RESOURCES

The campaign uses largely monochrome imagery: playing on the concept that the link between our children’s health and diet is simply ‘black and white’.

We encourage you to share the campaign materials in your networks, please contact us to gain access to the hi-res, different sized images for sharing.

Social Media Cards

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Video

Other Resources

Civil Society action Plan 2017-2021: Preventing Childhood Obesity in the Caribbean

Civil Society action Plan 2017-2021: Preventing Childhood Obesity in the Caribbean
Read/Download

Civil Society Policy Brief: Priority Nutrition Policies for Healthy Children in the Caribbean

Civil Society Policy Brief: Priority Nutrition Policies for Healthy Children in the Caribbean
Read/Download

Healthy Caribbean Coalition’s Childhood Obesity Prevention (COP) Portal

Healthy Caribbean Coalition’s Childhood Obesity Prevention (COP) Portal
Read more

Regulating the Availability and Marketing of Unhealthy Beverages and Food Products in and around Schools in the Caribbean Report

Report – Regulating the Availability and Marketing of Unhealthy Beverages and Food Products in and around Schools in the Caribbean Read/download

Model Policy and Legislative Guidance for Regulating the Availability and Marketing of Unhealthy Beverages and Food Products in and around Schools in the Caribbean

Model Policy and Legislative Guidance for Regulating the Availability and Marketing of Unhealthy Beverages and Food Products in and around Schools in the Caribbean Read/download

Summary - Policy and Legislative Guidance for Regulating the Availability and Marketing of Unhealthy Beverages and Food Products in and around Schools in the Caribbean

Summary – Policy and Legislative Guidance for Regulating the Availability and Marketing of Unhealthy Beverages and Food Products in and around Schools in the Caribbean Read/download

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