Celebrating Black History Month Through Health and Wellness
2:59 PM February 18, 2011
By Lisa Gable, Executive Director of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation
1963 was a critical year for African-Americans. Dr. Martin Luther King led the March on Washington. President John F. Kennedy called for a Civil Rights Act. African-American leaders intensified their organizing efforts aimed at strengthening their communities.
One of those efforts was the 100 Black Men of America Inc. It brought together community leaders to explore ways of improving conditions in their community.
Black History Month is a good time to mark the work of 100 Black Men of America. One of their goals is to promote wellness, especially reducing childhood obesity. A member organization of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, the organization is committed to promoting energy balance - taking fewer calories-in and expending more calories out through physical activity.
Battling obesity is not easy, especially where recess and physical education classes have been cut back. 100 Black Men's dedicated vehicle for pursuing energy balance is called Youth Movement, a program that helps students improve their heath, develop long-term goals and overcome obstacles and achieve lifetime success, by providing an outlet for physical activity, along with nutritional education. Volunteer nurses and coaches bring equipment and assess health and fitness levels at participating schools. After-school and weekend programs offer track and field clubs, athletic training and clinics facilitated by Olympians and world-class athlete volunteers.
Black History Month is a time to pay tribute of the power of community to better lives. 100 Black Men, Inc.'s efforts to improve wellness and reduce obesity among young people is an important part of that.