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Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 107, Issue 6, pp e556–e561 | Cite as

Policy at play: The implementation of Healthy Eating and Active Living Guidelines in municipal child care settings

  • Kelly McKayEmail author
  • Sherry Nigro
Innovations in Policy and Practice
  • 2 Downloads

Abstract

BACKGROUND: In 2012, Ottawa Public Health (OPH) partnered with the City of Ottawa Municipal Child Care (MCC) Services to develop Healthy Eating and Active Living (HEAL) Guidelines.

SETTING: The Guidelines aim to promote consistent standards of practice in child care settings related to healthy environments and food, physical activity, physical literacy, decreased sedentary behaviours, and positive role modeling by staff. The Guidelines targeted 498 children aged 18 months to 5 years, attending MCC centres. Resources and training were provided to 10 supervisors, 63 child care educators and 9 cooks.

INTERVENTION: Components of the Guidelines were piloted in 5 MCC sites prior to being launched in 10 MCC sites across Ottawa, Ontario. Two project Advisory Groups supported the development of the Guidelines. Staff training, resources, recipes and menus were provided. An evaluation was conducted and has informed the Guidelines’ subsequent community implementation. In 2015, accompanying web-based resources and e-modules were developed.

OUTCOMES: The evaluation demonstrated environmental and programming changes. Parent satisfaction was high and preliminary findings showed no real changes in food costs. Following implementation, the cooks reported high compliance to the 6-week menu plans provided, and the number of sites offering 120 minutes or more of daily physical activity increased.

IMPLICATIONS: Through novel intersectoral partnerships, OPH was able to implement and evaluate HEAL Guidelines in tandem. The interdisciplinary project Advisory Groups, training of cooks, and engagement of the Ontario Coaches Association were all innovative elements of this project and may influence future public health activity in this area.

Key Words

Child care child preschool nutrition policy public health health promotion 

Résumé

CONTEXTE: En 2012, Santé publique Ottawa (SPO) s’est associée aux Services de garde municipaux de la Ville d’Ottawa afin d’élaborer les Lignes directrices pour une saine alimentation et une vie active dans les garderies.

MILIEU VISE: Les Lignes directrices visent à uniformiser les normes de pratique dans les services de garde d’enfants en ce qui concerne la salubrité de l’environnement, la saine alimentation, l’activité physique, le savoir-faire physique, la réduction des comportements sédentaires et le rôle de modèle joué par le personnel. Elles ciblaient 498 enfants de 18 mois à 5 ans fréquentant une garderie municipale; 10 superviseurs, 63 éducateurs et 9 cuisiniers en garderie ont reçu des ressources et une formation.

INTERVENTION: Des éléments des Lignes directrices ont fait l’objet d’un projet pilote dans 5 garderies municipales, puis ont été implantés dans 10. Deux groupes consultatifs sur les projets ont participé à l’élaboration du document. Le personnel a reçu de la formation, des ressources, des recettes et des menus. Le projet comprenait aussi une évaluation, qui a guidé la suite de la mise en œuvre des Lignes directrices dans la collectivité. De plus, en 2015, des modules et des ressources complémentaires en ligne ont été élaborés.

RÉSULTATS: L’évaluation a montré des changements dans le milieu et les programmes. La satisfaction des parents était élevée, et les résultats préliminaires n’ont montré aucun changement réel des coûts alimentaires. Après la mise en œuvre, l’adhésion des cuisiniers aux menus de 6 semaines fournis était forte, et le nombre de garderies offrant quotidiennement 120 minutes d’activité physique ou plus avait augmenté.

IMPLICATIONS: Grâce à des partenariats intersectoriels inédits, SPO a pu instaurer et évaluer les Lignes directrices pour une saine alimentation et une vie active dans les garderies en tandem. La participation de groupes consultatifs interdisciplinaires sur les projets, la formation des cuisiniers et le concours de Coaches Association of Ontario, trois éléments novateurs de ce projet, pourraient avoir une incidence sur les prochaines activités de santé publique dans le domaine.

Mots Clés

services de garde enfant préscolaire politique sur la nutrition santé publique promotion de la santé 

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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Program Planning and Evaluation Officer, Ottawa Public HealthOttawaCanada
  2. 2.Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, Ottawa Public HealthOttawaCanada

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