2011 WDH fights teen obesity with new CLIMB Program
In an effort to combat alarming rates of childhood obesity and Type II diabetes, Wentworth-Douglass Hospital has launched a new exercise and nutrition program to educate teens and their families.
CLIMB (Changing Lifestyles Improving Mind and Body) is a 10-week program, focusing on teens ages 15-18 that are overweight. Teens will meet with the CLIMB Lifestyle Team four days a week to exercise, receive family and individual nutrition education, as well as explore emotional triggers for eating. Participants’ families will be invited to many workshops and exercise-based community excursions.
Halen Gori, Social Worker and CHaD Family Resource Coordinator, is the energy behind this vision for Seacoast teens.
“I am constantly being asked to help physicians and their pediatric patients find fitness-based activities in the community,” said Gori. “This program will help fill that need. Plus, with 32 percent of American children overweight and teens as young as 15 diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, a diagnosis usually given to overweight adults, I saw a particular need for programs that teach kids how to live a healthy lifestyle.”
The will teach teens and their families about making good food choices and incorporating exercise into daily life. It will also teach how to tolerate hard work and feel proud about accomplishments.
The program is based at The Works Family Health & Fitness Center in Somersworth. The first program starts in March 2011. There is a cost to families but families who complete over 75 percent of the activities will receive a partial refund.
Many professionals within Wentworth-Douglass Hospital and the community have collaborated to bring CLIMB to life and all are committed to helping kids. Teens enrolled in CLIMB will have the support of fitness trainers, a dietitian, physical therapists, a nurse practitioner and a counselor. Based on the results of the first CLIMB adventure, the Hospital hopes to offer multiple sessions each year for regional youth.
Astrid Wielens of Zebra Crossings, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing enrichment programs for children with chronic health conditions, helped design the CLIMB program. Mark Berman, MD, of Bellamy Health Center will oversee the medical aspects of the program.
For more information about or to register for Wentworth-Douglass Hospital’s CLIMB program, please contact Halen Gori at (603) 740-2574.