Food for smiling program encourages healthy eating in pre-school children

Food for smiling program encourages healthy eating in pre-school children

07 Sep 2011

The Smith Family and La Trobe University have teamed up to bring healthy smiles to pre-school children.

Baby teethOral Health Science Lecturer, Colleen McCarthy stressed the importance of making healthy food choices for young children.

‘It’s never too early to think about choosing foods that promote good dental care and this program is one way that parents can be better informed about making good choices for their children,’ Ms McCarthy said.

‘There are many parents in the community that don’t have access to general information about oral health and hygiene for local pre-schoolers. The Food 4 Smiling program reinforces the benefits of eating healthy foods and introducing healthy teeth habits from an early age,’ Ms McCarthy added.

Ms McCarthy said that the The Smith Family Food 4 Smiling program will be delivered free of charge by La Trobe University with support from Colgate Palmolive to 10 pre-schools in Bendigo.

Interactive education sessions by La Trobe University students  deliver information and practical advice for parents and carers on dental care, appropriate teeth cleaning, weaning and healthy foods and gives good, practical experience to La Trobe University students, who are assessed on their presentations

‘Feedback from both the playgroup parents and students is that the project has been successful and enjoyable,’ Ms McCarthy said.

The Food 4 Smiling program is being conducted by 18 second year Bachelor of Oral Health Science students and The Smith Family at 10 pre-schools in Bendigo. The program began on 11 August and will conclude on 16 September.

Results of the program so far in other locations have shown significant improvements in oral health and nutritional knowledge within the communities especially in children 0-5 years, their parents and carers. It has also provided greater access.

 

ENDS

 

INTERVIEW/PHOTO OPPORTUNITY

What?                      La Trobe University oral health students and The Smith Family’s John Krakowiak will present Food 4 Smiles to a playgroup in Eaglehawk

When?                     9.30 – 10.30 am, Friday 9 September 2011

Where?                   Eaglehawk Uniting Church, Peg Leg Road, Eaglehawk

 

Media enquiries

Zerin Knight, Ph (03) 5444 7375 F +613 5444 7526 M 0428 463 161 E z.knight@latrobe.edu.au

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