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Back to Symposium 2010

Speaker
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Kristi Rokosh, RD

University of Alberta

Ms. Rokosh is one of the facilitators representing the APPLE Schools Program - Alberta Project Promoting active Living & healthy Eating in Schools. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and obtained her Registered Dietitian status in 2004. She has experience in a variety of settings, including having worked with a focus on diabetes prevention in Northern Saskatchewan. She also developed great thinking skills while answering difficult and personal questions when working with children and youth in isolated communities. Ms. Rokosh’s wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm for healthy living makes her an invaluable asset to any team.

Alberta Project Promoting Active Living and Healthy Eating in Schools (APPLE Schools):
our Approach to Promoting Comprehensive School Health

Comprehensive School Health (CSH) is an intervention approach that moves beyond classroom-based health education models to a more integrated approach of health promotion. The primary goals of the project are to improve health-promoting behaviours among children and to increase the school community capacity to promote health-related behaviours. The effectiveness of fully implementing CSH is being studied and the results of this research intervention will be critical to justifying the broader implementation of CSH.

The School of Public Health at the University of Alberta is leading APPLE Schools. The project operates in 10 Alberta schools that have agreed to support initiatives for better nutrition and for promoting healthy weights among students. It is receiving national and international interest for the approach to change school environments in such a way that the healthy choice becomes the easy choice.

Full-time school health facilitators were placed in the schools to implement customized health promotion strategies that acknowledge the unique needs of and barriers to healthy living within school communities. The project team annually tracks changes in the health, nutrition, and physical activity of students. APPLE Schools has successfully impacted health outcomes and is changing school culture in all 10 pilot schools.

Two of the school’s health facilitators -- Jennifer Patrick in Vancouver and Kristi Rokosh in Montreal, Moncton and Toronto -- will present the APPLE School story on behalf of Dr. Paul Veugelers, Director of the Population Health Intervention Research Unit at the University of Alberta, School of Public Health, Department of Public Health Sciences.

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