“Eat Smart to Play Hard” (ESPH) is a 6-week campaign developed using a social marketing framework that is designed to increase fruit and vegetable consumption among 8- to 10-year old children. Obesity rates have remained high despite many attempted public health interventions, indicating that education alone is not adequate to change behavior. Social marketers have developed a specific planning process using traditional commercial marketing strategies to promote positive social and behavior change.
After conducting five years of formative research with the priority population, the UNM PRC Social Marketing team created a passport booklet and piloted a campaign in Santa Fe, NM in 2015 that showed extremely promising results. Children who completed the passport increased consumption of fruits and vegetables by almost two additional servings per day on average than those who did not complete the passport. This year we are expanding our reach by testing ESPH in four rural counties across New Mexico, in partnership with the Healthy Kids Healthy Communities initiative.
Everyone involved in this project will play a role in contributing to the health of their communities. We hope you are excited to join us in the Eat Smart to Play Hard Adventure!
Recent Campaign Highlights
Over 1200 students will begin Eat Smart to Play Hard in the fall of 2016. Participating schools include: Milan, Blue Water, and San Rafael Elementary in Cibola County, El Camino Real Academy, Nina Otero Community, and Sweeney Elementary in Santa Fe County, Nancy Lopez, Lake Arthur, Hagerman, and Pecos Elementary in Chaves County, Lockwood, La Casita, Parkview, and James Bickley Elementary in Curry County, and Rita A. Marquez, Santa Rosa, and Vaughn Elementary in Guadalupe County.
We are excited for these 4th, 5th, and 6th grade students as they begin their adventure in September and October. The 2nd and 3rd grade students will begin the 5-2-1-O Challenge in mid to late October. Show your support and help these students “Eat Smart to Play Hard”!