The association MOVEMENT (POKRET) – active and healthy – has been, since 2010, supported by the Office for Combatting Illicit Drugs, the Agency for Education and the Croatian Olympic Committee, implementing the programme “Choose Sport” in primary schools, targeted at pupils of lower grades. In different segments, the programme has been undertaken in Zagreb, Samobor, Poreč, Dubrovnik, Vinkovci, Vukovar and Pula.
The project “Choose Sport” was presented at the international conference organised by the World Health Organisation, within the programme of “European Healthy Cities,” in Liege, Belgium, in 2011, and, in 2012, it was presented as best practice example within the “Prevention Week” held by the Ministry of Health in Zagreb, and at the “Expert Panel for Primary Schools Headmasters” held in Pula.
Furthermore, the project received the support from the International Olympic Committee in 2014 – under the Olympic Solidarity, within the framework of the programme Promotion of Olympic Values – Sport for All,” and, in 2014/15, it was implemented in the primary schools of the City of Rijeka, where it exhibited exceptionally proficient results in motivating children to get involved in sport. In 2015, the project was presented at the 8th Meeting of the WHO, European Childhood Obesity Surveillance Initiative, in Dubrovnik.
We are aware of the growing issue of obesity and the importance of advancing preventive strategies aimed at resolving this public health problem in all age groups, especially during childhood.
Obesity in childhood is a risk factor for the development of obesity in adult age, and a whole array of illnesses that accompany it.
Physical activity is one of the fundamental human living requirements, which, along healthy diet, directly impacts the prevention of obesity. Through basic movement and play, children achieve the necessary intensity required for proper and healthy development less and less. This is the age when they should already be directed and their heathy habits created. Computer fun, the internet and video games decrease the need to move.
Health institutions have detected the issue as growing with the start of the primary school, when the sedentary lifestyle begins and obesity in children starts being pronounced. One of the solutions is inclusion of children into sport.
The series of books “Kid Athletes” – as one of the segments of the programme “Choose Sport:” the series “Kid Athletes” was published in 2008, supported by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Croatian Olympic Committee (HOO), which proved that the books “Kid Athletes” meet the highest expertise standards for sports literature. Since 2011, the books have been listed as an auxiliary teaching aid for the subject of Physical Education and Health Culture, for grades 1-4 of primary schools.
The project “Olympic Stories” was implemented during the school year of 2014/15, and was supported by the Ministry of Health in the primary schools in the City of Zagreb and the County of Primorsko – goranska.
In May 2015, in Dubrovnik, the projects “Choose Sport” and “Olympic Stories” were presented at a conference held by the World Health Organisation.
Members of the association participated in programmes of the Croatian Institute for Public Health, in preparing the alternative curriculum programme for Physical and Health Culture for pupils of lower grades of primary schools which do not have gyms.