Local group works to improve children’s health

Friday, January 16, 2015

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The Coalition Preventing Childhood Obesity (CPCO) is a multi-state project funded by the United States Department Agriculture (USDA) Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) and, in South Dakota, is administered through South Dakota State University in Brookings.


 The goal of the CPCO is to prevent childhood obesity with the help of community members.


De Smet is one of two communities in South Dakota chosen to receive a three-year  $15,000 (total) grant, to help achieve that goal.


All CPCO projects must be evidence-based and have research to validate the outcome. Hospital involvement is also required.


The De Smet Coalition for Healthy Kids, who is working on the CPCO project, consists of representatives from Avera De Smet Memorial Hospital, Laura Ingalls Wilder Elementary School, the city office, parents, local day care providers and an SDSU graduate student who assists with research.


The group, which has been meeting regularly for about a year, first surveyed parents of young children to help identify community needs and what might be feasible here. Natalie Palmlund, director of nursing at Avera De Smet Memorial Hospital, said their first project is to get the ice rink at Washington Park going again, because there are not a lot of activities for children to do in the winter.


Donna Palmlund

Staff Writer

The De Smet News

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