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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 15482

A Wellbeing Plan for Australian Children

Photo of Howard, John

Howard, John

Period of Service: 11/03/1996 to 03/12/2007

More information about Howard, John on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 21/09/2007

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 15482

The Australian Government has implemented a number of measures to help combat childhood obesity and today I am pleased to endorse the first stage of another; the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation's Wellbeing Plan for Aussie Kids.

The CSIRO plan will be rolled out in two stages, with the first involving a mail out to schools of 1.9 million fridge magnets for every Australian primary school child, and the second a book and other resources which will be released over the next two years.

Funding of $3 million for this project was announced in the May Budget.

As Australian parents we have the responsibility of looking after the health and wellbeing of our children.

The mail out of the fridge magnets, which outlines a 10 point plan for healthy eating and healthy habits, began earlier this week. To complement the fridge magnet, a website has also been developed to provide practical advice for Australian parents.

They will provide invaluable healthy eating and lifestyle information - in a simple and direct way - for both parents and children.

The decision by the Government to fund the CSIRO project is in response to the increasing problem of obesity among Australian children, and follows the success of the CSIRO's Total Wellbeing Diet books for adults, which to date has sold more than one million copies in Australia.

It is estimated that between 20 and 25 per cent of Australian children aged seven to 15 years are overweight or obese.

Other Government measures to tackle obesity include the $124.4 million Active After School Communities program and the $250 million Australian Better Health Initiative to promote healthy lifestyles and fund health checks and access to health services.

In addition, we have appointed well known athletes as ambassadors to visit schools and encourage children to eat better and exercise more. We have also introduced a requirement for schools to provide at least 2 hours of physical activity per week for primary and junior secondary school children.

Transcript 15482