Keeping Children Healthy at Camp

Written by admin, July 10, 2014

July 10, 2014 – The Peer Leaders at Public Health are Doing What They Can to Keep Children Healthy at Summer Camp

Screen Shot 07-10-14 at 10.05 AMWith summer now underway, the Peer Leaders at Peterborough Public Health (PCCHU) have developed an education program for young campers and are planning to reach as many day camps as possible in and around Peterborough. These programs are meant to raise awareness and address different issues such as; sun safety, commercial tobacco use, nutrition, West-Nile virus and Lyme disease.

“Summer is a time for children to be adventurous and enjoy playing beyond the four walls of a classroom,” says Katherine Morin, the Youth Development Worker at Public Health. “With that in mind, the Peer Leaders and PCCHU want to ensure that children and young people in our community stay safe and protect themselves.”

Ultimately they want the children to leave camp with four lessons:

  • How to protect themselves from the sun
    • Since it is the summer, it is very important to teach the campers how to stay safe in the sun by applying enough sunscreen throughout the day and drinking lots of water;
    • Understanding the health effects of smoking
      • Since most people who use tobacco start before the age of 18 it is important to teach children, before they try tobacco products, that using commercial tobacco products is unhealthy.  Through fun and engaging activities the Peer Leaders hope to demonstrate the negative health effects of smoking and prevent young people from wanting to try tobacco products;
      • Knowing which snacks are healthy
        • The Peer Leaders will be providing a healthy snack consisting of cheese and fruit showing that a snack should contain at least two food groups. They are also showing that snack time can be fun by having the campers make food animals;  and
        •  Prevention of mosquito and ticks bites
          • The Vector- borne Disease Prevention program will also engage the children in an activity about West Nile virus and Lyme disease prevention. The three key themes include the use of bug spray, wearing long, light coloured clothing, and performing regular tick checks.

Not only is it important for children to know how to be healthy while at camp, it is also important for parents and caregivers to help their children make healthy choices.

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 For further information, please contact:

Katherine Morin
Youth Development Worker
kmorin@peterboroughpublichealth.ca
705-743-1000 ext. 321

 

Luisa Magalhaes
Public Health Nutritionist
lmagalhaes@peterboroughpublichealth.ca
705-743-1000 ext. 233