FROM THE NC Institute of Emerging Issues
A project that involves Warren Wilson College students is in the running for a $5,000 prize. The project is the N.C. Youth Food Council (see below).
Students offer creative ways to reduce childhood obesity
Raleigh, NC – January 4, 2011 – Five student projects have been selected to compete for $5,000 in the inaugural Emerging Issues Prize for Innovation.
This fall, the Institute for Emerging Issues (IEI) challenged full-time students from 2- and 4-year colleges or universities in North Carolina to design an innovative, effective and scalable solution to address the challenge of childhood and adolescent obesity. The prize, developed in collaboration with Governor Perdue’s Innovation Council, is awarded in coordination with IEI’s annual Emerging Issues Forum, which is focused this year on the topic of innovating healthcare.
“I’m so pleased to see the Emerging Issues Prize for Innovation receive so many quality submissions in its first year,” said Anita Brown-Graham, director of the Institute for Emerging Issues. “The breadth and energy of the entries makes it clear that this generation is not only innovative, but motivated and committed to helping their fellow citizens.”
This year’s finalists are:
FETCH: Tri-County Community College
FETCH (Fun Exercising Together for Children’s Health) pairs middle school students with dogs from a local animal shelter, increasing the child’s physical activity while exercising and training dogs. During FETCH sessions, students will exercise the dogs in an arena with tunnels, jumps and runs. The children will learn about canine conditioning and healthy nutrition, will be provided with healthy snacks, and help create snacks for the dogs to learn about the importance of nutrition combined with exercise.
Fruit of the Month: NC State University
Implemented at local grocery stores, a membership card to the “Fruit of the Month Club” grants a child one featured fruit or vegetable per month. Weekly emails would be sent out to the parent with nutrition facts and recipes that correspond with the month’s featured produce, and a Saturday activity at the end of the month would include both parents and kids. A taste-testing festival to usher in the spring, summer, and fall seasons of produce; International Food Saturdays with produce and dishes from different regions of the world; and tours of the grocery stores to teach families about the fundamentals of shopping and eating healthfully are all in the activity line-up.
The Little Red Wagon: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
The Little Red Wagon is a mobile market: a colorful hitch that brings fresh produce at an affordable price to communities with limited access to grocery stores, limited resources, and limited ability to travel to purchase food. The Little Red Wagon will arrive at each site with children’s sports equipment and a volunteer assigned to supervise and encourage active play and dance.
North Carolina Youth Food Council
a collaboration between Warren Wilson College, Elon University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and NC State University
Establishes a statewide Youth Food Council to serve as a forum for food systems issues, coordinate between geographic locales and various food system organization and entities, guide local and state policy development, and initiate and support program ideas for youth.
Rascals: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Rascals will make physical activity addictive for kids by creating a fun and competitive online world where rewards can be earned for real world play. Using a watch-based pedometer that integrates with an interactive website to track activity for points, gift cards, virtual goods and other online rewards. Tracked activity will upload to a website in real-time, earning kids “rascal points” to use on virtual goods and prizes.
Each of the finalists will receive $1,000 and are now tasked with creating a short video showcasing their idea. The videos will be voted on by the public on IEI’s website, http://www.emeringissues.org,
from January 31- February 7, and featured at the 2011 Emerging Issues Forum in front of more than 1,200 North Carolinians. The winner will be announced at the Forum on February 8 by Dr. James Gavin, the chairman of the Partnership for a Healthier America Michelle Obama’s partner in her “Let’s Move” childhood obesity initiative.
Judges for the Emerging Issues Prize were:
Leslie Boney, Associate Vice President for Economic Development for the University of North Carolina General Administration and member of Governor Perdue’s Innovation Council; Shirley Frye, Chair, NC School of Science and Mathematics; Matthew Gymer, Director of Innovation, Novant Health; Toni Lipscomb, Managing Director of AWN Associates and IEI Advisory Board member; Jennifer MacDougall, Healthy Active Communities Program Manager, Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation of North Carolina
For more details on the prize, visit http://www.emergingissues.org
The Institute for Emerging Issues is a public policy organization dedicated to North Carolina’s future competitiveness. By supporting collaboration among individuals from all sectors and areas of the state, IEI builds an enduring capacity for progress. Learn more at: http://www.emergingissues.org