2016 FIT TEEN PROGRAM CLOSES ON HIGH NOTE 2017 PROGRAM NOW UNDERWAY
On Tuesday, February 28, at the Teachers’ Resource Centre, the Department of Youth and Culture held a closing ceremony for participants of the 2016 Fit Teen Program and also launched the 2017 Fit Teen Program. The program runs for 3 months and is aimed at encouraging young people to participate in physical activities, while fostering positive behaviors, well-being and reducing the propensity to health issues.
The Fit Teen Program, initiated by Mr. Duquaine Brooks, owner and lead instructor of the Results Driven Fitness Centre with the Ministry of Health and Social Development in partnership with the Health Authority of Anguilla, provides support and well-being to a percentage of adolescent youth, ages 12 to 17, who fit into the categories of overweight, obese and morbidly obese, based on the Centre of Disease Control, Body Mass Index (BMI).
The key agencies involved in the program are the Ministry of Health and Social Development, the Department of Youth & Culture, the Department of Sports, the Department of Education, the School Health Unit, the Chronic Disease Unit, the Health Authority of Anguilla, the Food & Nutrition Unit and the Pediatric Unit in collaboration with the Results Driven Center.
Mr. Foster Rogers, Permanent Secretary of Health, highlighted that, “Anguilla has approximately 8% of the adult population currently diagnosed with a chronic disease,” and that it was “estimated that over 50% of allocated funds, for medical treatment and care is spent on patients who are battling complications of a chronic disease.” He went on: “In hope of tackling these concerns, the various departments within the Ministry of Health and Social Development place significant emphasis on enhancing the well-being of children, youth and adults in areas relating to health. Regular involvement in physical activity is fundamental for good health and wellness as well…On these grounds, of promoting a healthier youth population in Anguilla, the Fit Teen Program came into being.”
In welcoming the new participants for the 2017 Fit Teen Program, he told them, “We are investing in you, but it is your responsibility to reap the benefits of this program.”
Rogers also took the opportunity to commend the Fit Teen team for their efforts, and applauded the parents and students of the 2016 Fit Teen Program for recognizing its importance and sticking with it.
Mr. Duquaine Brooks said the program was hard work, and commended the parents and guardians for their commitment. He expressed his heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the individuals and agencies that helped in making his vision a reality.
The ceremony ended with the presentation of certificates and special awards, followed by testimonial speeches by a participant of the program and a parent of a participant.