NICHD and Spelman College Partner on Wellness Initiative
As National Diabetes Month launches, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) and Spelman College have partnered to focus on three key projects to promote the health of Spelman students and the communities they will influence. The two organizations have signed an official memorandum of understanding to develop health projects devoted to nutrition, fitness education and physical activity.
"The National Institutes of Health seeks to improve the public’s health and wellness, through research and by communicating health information,” said Yvonne T. Maddox, Ph.D., Deputy Director, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. “Our partnership with Spelman is an important part of that process, and we look forward to working with its officials and students to improve the lives of young women, their families, and members of their communities through education and research engagement around nutrition and physical activity."
The partnership between NICHD and the college arose from Spelman’s Wellness Revolution, announced in November 2012. The goal of the Wellness Revolution is to improve the health and wellness of members of the community at this historically Black college for women. The Wellness Revolution is a response to the disproportionately high rates of obesity, cardiovascular disease and diabetes among African-Americans, particularly among women and the ever-alarming obesity statistics associated with youth.
“The health status and predictions of shortened life spans for today’s youth are alarming," said Spelman College President Beverly Daniel Tatum. “We have an opportunity and responsibility to intervene, and colleges and universities are in an excellent position to do so. We welcome our partnership with NICHD because they share our commitment to the health of the next generation.”
Together, NICHD and Spelman College will:
- Co-sponsor a summit at Spelman on nutrition, physical activity and wellness on Feb. 6, 2014. NICHD will provide experts on nutrition in women to speak at the event.
- Connect students to health researchers through internships and other educational opportunities to foster interest in scientific careers.
- Educate potential national partners about the Wellness Revolution as a program to model for college women on other campuses.
Past Events: College Hosts CNN Dialogues Talk on Food Deserts According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 14.5 percent of American households were food insecure at least some time during the year in 2012, meaning they lacked access to enough food for an active, healthy life for all household members.
On Tuesday, Nov. 12, Spelman hosted "Hungry For Change: America's Struggle to Eliminate Food Deserts," a CNN Dialogues event that will focus on the issues of food security and food deserts in the United States, with a particular emphasis on the 17 million children who spend their days and nights hungry.
Moderated by CNN's chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta, the talk focused on what works, what doesn't, and what needs to change to put healthy food in the hands of more Americans. Panelists included: Maura Daly, chief communication and development officer for Feeding America, the nation's largest domestic hunger relief charity; K. Rashid Nuri, founder of Truly Living Well Center in Atlanta; and Monica White, assistant professor of Environmental Justice at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with a joint appointment at the Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies and the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology.