Community-academic partnership to promote cardiovascular health among underserved children and families NCRP Winter 2014 Scientist Development Grant

Project: Research project

Project Details

Description

Community-academic partnership to promote cardiovascular health among underserved children and families NCRP Winter 2014 Scientist Development Grant Community-academic partnership to promote cardiovascular health among underserved children and families PROJECT SUMMARY Few studies have been successful at child obesity long-term, especially among underserved populations. A weight-focused approach may not be appropriate given cultural beliefs/norms related to body weight and body image among some groups of people. Also, defining success by weight-loss overlooks evidence of the numerous health benefits achieved through improving cardiovascular fitness (CVF), independent of obesity. Thus, improving CVF in addition to obesity-related behaviors is a realistic approach among ethnically diverse populations. City recreation centers represent promising (yet understudied) settings to promote sustainable interventions for increasing CVF among minority children. Recreation centers have the capacity to reach large-numbers of people but often lack the resources to hire highly trained staff to implement and evaluate programs. The PI has recently completed a pilot study to test the feasibility and acceptability of Athletes for Life (AFL). AFL was a 6-week fitness-oriented and nutrition-education behavioral program delivered in a city recreation center for children aged 6-11 years and their parents living in an underserved region of South Phoenix (AZ). The program was theory-driven, evidence-based, culturally appropriate and developed using the principles of Community-Based Participatory Research CBPR. The community partners include a recreation center site and a community clinic. This collaboration was established to leverage existing resources and expertise from each organization with the vision of creating long-term sustainable programs. Using a mixed-methods approach, results showed that the program was feasible and acceptable for both the study participants and for the community partners. Children showed significant improvements in CVF and both the parent and child BMIs showed a decreasing trend. Dietary behaviors also showed favorable trends in reducing frequency of consuming sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB). These preliminary results will inform the proposed study, which will test the efficacy of an expanded and improved, 12-week, AFL program. The primary outcome will be CVF among 160 underserved 6-11 year old children. Secondary outcomes will be child PA and dietary intake. The study will enroll child-parent dyads and will have a two-group randomized controlled design. The family will be randomly assigned to the intervention group or a waiting-list control group.
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date7/1/146/30/16

Funding

  • American Heart Association: $307,837.00

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