Childhood obesity is a major public health challenge in Canada. The BC Ministry of Health funded the knowledge-user (Childhood Obesity Foundation) to design and implement a “made in BC” community-based Childhood Healthy Weights Early Intervention Program (EIP) for children 8-12 years old. However, it has proven challenging to reach families who can’t attend in person. But with improved access to the Internet, web-based lifestyle programs may be well-suited to meet this challenge. In this project, the team will build an interactive web-based childhood obesity prevention program based on the EIP curriculum.
The web-based program will address major gaps in existing interventions, such as making the program accessible to non-traditional families; this includes Indigenous families, families from multi-cultural or intercultural backgrounds, and those of lower socioeconomic status. The program will also include sessions on sleep hygiene and screen use. This project will consist of three phases. In the first phase (0-5 months), an integrated-KT approach will be used to develop a web-based program (Aim 1). Integrated-KT helps ensure the web-based program is relevant and useful to all stakeholders (e.g. knowledge users, researchers, end-users). At the end of phase two (month 7), it is expected there will be a functional interactive web-based program that has undergone usability testing (Aim 2). In phase three (8-12 months), work will be done with the research user to disseminate the web-based intervention to diverse groups of families with children off the healthy weight trajectory (Aim 3).
This project has potential to be incredibly impactful as a web-based intervention can extend the reach of the Childhood Healthy Weights EIP across BC.