Australia’s favourite giraffe, Harold, will help to tackle preschool obesity on the Gold Coast

by Freya Lucas

December 03

Life Education Queensland has recently announced a nutrition education plan for children aged four to five years, designed to combat rising childhood obesity and children choosing unhealthy food. Three Queensland cities, including the Gold Coast, will trial the program before it is implemented statewide, The Gold Coast Bulletin reported

 

Queensland towns Logan and Ipswich will join the Gold Coast in the trial, with children at Mermaid Waters Community Kindergarten amongst the first to meet Gold Coast Health trauma surgeon Dr Martin Wullschleger,  and the charity’s mascot, Healthy Harold the giraffe, when the program was launched this week. 

 

Dr Wullschleger, Life Education Queensland board director, said it was vital to start educating children early about making healthy food choices and leading active lifestyles, comparing such conversations to those held with teens about the dangers of unsafe driving, drugs and drinking.

 

“Just like we educate teenagers around the risks, choices and consequences of risky behaviours, this program will educate young children how to make smart choices when it comes to food and being physically active,” Dr Wullschleger said.

 

More than 25 per cent of Australia’s children are obese or overweight, and only one per cent meet the daily recommended serves of fruit and vegetables, Life Education chief executive Michael Fawsitt said.

 

The new nutrition program will be funded by some of the $1.28 million provided to Life Education by Queensland Health.

 

To read the original coverage of this story, as produced by The Gold Coast Bulletin, please see here

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