Convening to Combat Childhood Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes in New Mexico
A Project Supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
About the August 7th Convening
The one day convening was extremely well attended by more than 130 community, youth, tribal, philanthropic and state stakeholders! Participants engaged in a process to share what is working and to identify what actions individuals, communities, Tribes and allies can take to come together to positively impact childhood obesity and prevent type 2 diabetes among New Mexico’s Native children.
The event focused on three key areas that were identified in previous convening’s as having significant impact on building local capacity and making lasting, positive change on children’s health in Indian Country: youth engagement, food systems/access to healthy food and physical activity and the built environment.
Across the three key areas and heard throughout the day were some common themes and areas of action, a few of which are outlined below. Additional analysis of the August 7th and previous convenings will be shared on our website by the end of August and also distributed to all participants, Tribal leaders and key stakeholders and our final report to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation will be disseminated in October 2012.
Critical next steps for immediate individual action:
- Start Small: Connect to existing programs & efforts – be present, build relationships, get involved, take action!
- Educate and Get Educated: Actively research, label read, ask questions about food and nutritional values, reinvest in traditional foods, and talk to others about what you learn – share the knowledge, raise awareness!
- Walk the talk: be consistent in talking about healthy food, choices & demonstrate healthy behaviors with your own food choices and physical effort; your family and children are observing and copying your choices – be a good and intentional role model every day!
Critical next steps for action by tribes, organizations and allies:
- Create a shared vision and plan within each of the identified areas to help guide communities, programs, tribal leaders and other key allies in building effective partnerships to invest and share resources and efforts to collectively increase impact.
- Establish or build on existing groups/partnerships to host ongoing discussions within these three topic areas and use the groups to support implementation of identified work across these areas.
- Develop a Youth Driven Health Media Campaign. Mobilize Native youth as key champions in the community and ensure tribal communities and youth are central to all health promotion efforts.
- Strengthen existing community and tribal leadership to develop sustainable and effective policies. Central to developing effective policies is ensuring tribes and communities are actively involved, educated and informing their data collection and dissemination at the community, local and state levels.
Collectively, participants reflected that communication is an absolute necessity to building momentum and supporting success in this work to save and protect our children. The NB3 Foundation honors that value and is committed to sharing information in a timely, useable fashion.
Special thanks to our partner First Nations Development Institute and to Con Alma Health Foundation, New Mexico Community Foundation and the McCune Foundation for their participation and support in the funders panel.
Presentations from the following speakers can be downloaded below:
- Crystal Echo Hawk, NB3 Foundation
- Jeff Metoxen, Oneida Nation
- Kristyn Yepa, Jemez Pueblo
- Regis Pecos, Chief of Staff for New Mexico House Speaker Ben Lujan
- Michelle Gutierrez, Con Alma Health Foundation
Know someone who would be interested in reading the final convening report? We would love to share it with them! Please forward their contact information to: