The Ministry of Health and Wellness is calling on adults to ensure that children receive at least 60 minutes of physical activity each week, for sustained health.
Issuing the call, Senior Health Education Officer at the Ministry, Charmaine Plummer, told JIS News there is an increase in overweight and obesity, due to limited physical activities, which she attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic and other cultural norms.
“They are not moving enough, and as a result we are seeing overweight, obesity and more stress, so we want to get away from that. Our teachers, parents and community members need to motivate our children to be more active,” she said.
The senior health official is recommending that parents make time and play with children, take them through walks, “even if it is around the house”.
“If we have a brilliant mind, and we don’t have a body for that mind to function, it is of no use, so we must balance the academic with the physical,” she suggested.
Mrs. Plummer said parents and guardians should use the National School Moves Day, slated for Friday, April 23, to get children on the physical agenda.
This is being spearheaded by the Health Ministry, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information.
The event is geared at heightening awareness of the importance of physical activities by creating increased opportunities for participation by the school community. It is one of the measures under the Jamaica Moves in Schools Programme, which promotes healthy lifestyles.
“We want everybody to drop everything at noon (on April 23), and engage in at least five minutes of physical activity,” the Senior Health Education Officer said.
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