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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Southern California

Hawaiian Gardens Educates Parents on Healthy Eating

One-third of students in Hawaiian Gardens struggle with childhood obesity, giving the parent training program particular urgency.

At Furgeson Elementary School in Hawaiian Gardens, city officials, ABC Unified School District school officials, and families gathered to celebrate the culmination of Activate Hawaiian Gardens.

The pet project of Alexander Kananashvili, the Wellness Program Coordinator at the Tri-City Regional Medical Center, the classes were conducted over a seven week period to teach parents how to feed their children healthy foods.

Childhood obesity is a major problem affecting much of American youth, and is especially troubling in Hawaiian Gardens, where one-third of the students struggle with obesity.

During the classes the student parents learned how to substitute unhealthy snacks for healthy ones, what were adequate portion sizes, and how sleep patterns affected weight.

Some parents saw changes not only in their children, but in themselves as well, when they altered their diets. 

As administrators and politicians handed out the awards, children joined their parents on stage as they received their certificates and gifts.

Even if the actual graduates were parents, whole families will reap the benefits from the completion of their classes.

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