Active, Health Living in Latin America Campaign Winners
1. Hands to the Earth (Manos a la Tierra) (Argentina): The diet of Argentina’s rural populations mainly consists of meat and carbohydrate-based foods with a large deficiency of vegetables. As a means to increase the availability of vegetables in the community, Hands to the Earth will teach primary and secondary school children in Tapalqué, Argentina, how to plant and maintain vegetable gardens, how to compost, and how to appreciate the significance of biodiversity. The project will, initially, supply economical and organic vegetables for subsistence with the ultimate goal of selling the surplus products. Hands to the Earth will also encourage the students and their families to begin vegetable gardens in their homes, teaching the community about environmental responsibility and the importance of a well-balanced diet.

    2. Project Sports-Health (Proyecto Depor-Salud) (Argentina): To discourage and ultimately prevent alcohol and drug abuse among youth, Project Sport-Health will work to create an environment for adolescents to engage in healthy lifestyles by establishing a sports school. The sports school, which will be founded in the San Cayetano neighborhood located near Eldorado, Argentina, will encourage active living and proper nutrition among the vulnerable adolescents and youth in the area. The school will engage the surrounding community through informative talks about reproductive health and group sports including basketball, soccer, and group walks. As a community center, the school will also be available for youth and adolescents to socialize in activities free of alcohol.

      3. Healing Puppets (Títeres que Sanan) (Argentina): Healing Puppets will promote healthy living characteristics, such as socialization, self-esteem, and creativity, using puppets as the protagonists in edutainment activities. These activities will address important and timely health-related topics to people of all ages at strategic locations in Barrio del Carmen, Argentina, such as the local library, schools, hospitals, and geriatric residences. Children and their families will also be invited to create their own puppets and be a part of the Children Puppeteers to give shows teaching health topics.

        4. With Sports and Art, I Will Grow and Take Part (Com Esporte e Arte, Eu Cresço e Faço Parte) (Brazil): With Sports and Art, I Will Grow and Take Part will host and promote cycling activities in Caucala, Brazil, as a platform for improving health and increasing civic responsibility and social development among children and youth. As a way to decrease the amount of time people are sedentary, With Sports and Art, I Will Grow and Take Part will establish six neighborhood-based teams to participate in bicycle rides on specific days and times. For six months during these bicycle rides, the teams will disseminate information in their communities about civic responsibility and social development. At the end of the six months, these teams will participate in a large bicycle race. With Sports and Art, I Will Grow and Take Part will encourage the participants to share their ideas on how to better the community, reducing the number of youths idle in the streets.

        5. Pull-ups for the Neighborhood! (Barras Pal Barrio!) (Colombia): Pull-ups for the Neighborhood! will provide a free alternative to a gym by converting an open and otherwise underused space in Barranquilla, Colombia, and making iron bars, in different arrangements, free and openly available for exercise. In this particular area of Barranquilla, drug abuse is a large problem among youth. By providing a park in which everyone will be able to exercise, Pull-ups for the Neighborhood! will help to dispel the attraction to drug and alcohol abuse, ultimately providing a means to a healthy lifestyle and better mental health. The project will help to instill the idea that people can exercise without expensive equipment.

          6. Planting Seeds of Identity (Sembrando Semillas de Identidad) (Colombia): Planting Seeds of Identity hopes to quell some of the animosity created by the civil strife that has been plaguing Bogotá, Colombia, for several generations and create a more community-based environment through nutritional education. Planting Seeds of Identity will conduct workshops to teach agricultural sustainability and the food cycle. Through these workshops, the project will also promote healthy eating habits while providing an environment for different community members to meet and become familiar with one another by holding inter-generation dialogues and community lunches. As a forum for open communication about health, Planting Seeds of Identity aims to cross over cultural boundaries that have been predominant in Colombia.

            7. Children ABC (Niños ABC) (Ecuador): Children ABC will offer a cooking course to 7- to 9-year-old students from the Boyacá School in Chimborazo, Ecuador, where healthy eating habits will be highlighted. As part of the program, the cohort of students will form a public relations campaign targeting the rest of the school; they will teach their peers about nutrition and healthy cooking, and how to build and sustain a garden that will supply the students with vegetables and fruits. Children ABC’s ultimate goal is to encourage children to make their own dietary decisions based on the nutritional value of food. The children will also be able to teach their families about nutrition and be able to build their own gardens.

              8. Chalchuapa Style (El Salvador): Chalchuapa Style plans to use dance and music’s ability to decrease stress by establishing a breakdance group with 25 youths, ages 14 to 28, and eight children under 12 years old in Santa Ana, El Salvador, also known as Chalchuapa. The dance group will act as an outlet for the students to escape from violent situations in their neighborhoods and form a sense of community among the participants. The students will learn breakdance techniques and will later preform at free public events. In the next year, Chalchuapa Style aims to establish groups in other Hip Hop related arts, such as graffiti and beat box, in hopes of reaching a larger number of youths and children.

                9. Youth for the Present (Jóvenes por el Presente) (El Salvador): Youth for the Present will develop leadership and critical thinking skills in youth, which are necessary for today’s reality in San Salvador, El Salvador. The project will promote daily physical activity and empower the youth so that they can educate others on the importance of staying active. Topics related to nutrition and physical activity will be addressed to provide youth with the necessary tools and knowledge to maintain healthy active lifestyles. Youth for the Present will also teach gardening skills for the cultivation of organic produce. This project’s main objective is for youth to gain positive experiences, to grow personally, and to learn that through hard work they can achieve their personal goals.

                  10. Calderitas Sports Union (Unión Deportiva Calderitas) (El Salvador): Calderitas Sports Union will leverage the area’s long history of sport enthusiasm by establishing a soccer league for children and youth between 14- to 24-years-old to promote youth leadership and active living through sports. The Union, founded by local youth, will build a soccer field and begin soccer leagues according to age and sex. Tournaments will be scheduled for the end of the season. The Calderitas Sports Union will work to expand into different sports such as basketball, softball, and table tennis.

                  11. Jumping (El Salvador): Jumping hopes to recruit at least 45 children and youths to practice and, eventually, exhibit their skills jumping rope in El Congo School in Santa Ana, El Salvador. Jumping rope has many benefits for example, developing better coordination, increasing respiratory capacity, helping to maintain physical health, increasing blood flow, and serving as aerobic exercise. The students would be taught the benefits of staying active while competing in tournaments and advocating for Jumping to attain higher membership. Jumping, after one year, will expand to other sports including basketball, softball, and table tennis. Jumping would be the first sports club of its kind in El Salvador; using its originality, Jumping will attract more recruits to reach more children and youths.

                  12. Publish-ideas (Publideas) (El Salvador): Publish-ideas will present a closed-circuit radio program dedicated to interviewing health professionals. Topics will focus on the most common illnesses found in Santa Ana, El Salvador, preventative measures against the illnesses, and treatment options. Initially, the radio program will reach small audiences in public spaces, but with time Publish-ideas will purchase more equipment and work with different speakers to further expand the reach to the target population. The program will conduct surveys to attain input from its listeners about program topics, which will in turn help increase the number of listeners to eventually reach audiences on open-circuit radio and internet radio.

                  13. Let’s Get Active and Healthy Juggling (Activémonos y Sanémonos Malabareando) (Mexico): Let’s Get Active and Healthy Juggling will recruit 50 children and 15 youths, with support of their families in the Colonia Plateros in Mexico City, Mexico, to form a social circus. While teaching juggling and other expressive art forms, the children and youth will learn about the importance of physical health, tolerance, respect, equality, and sportsmanship. The project will focus on highlighting each individual’s strength and incorporating them as an integral part of the group. Let’s Get Active and Healthy Juggling plans to gradually increase the number of children involved in the circus and to teach more children to relax, entertain, and enjoy themselves.

                  14. Score a Goal on Violence (Métele un gol a la Violencia) (Mexico): Score a Goal on Violence will advocate against violence and uphold human rights by teaching sportsmanship. The project will engage 15- to 19-year-old youth from the Ciudad de San Francisco in Campeche, Mexico, in sports as a way to promote active living and non-violence. The youth will also participate in informative workshops on violence, human rights, and healthy living. As part of the project, Score a Goal on Violence youth will also volunteer to repair public spaces where they will be playing. The project will solicit funds and support from the local government, ensuring the project’s success and longevity.

                  15. Boys, Girls, and Youth Using Public Spaces (Niñas, Niños y Jóvenes Usando los Espacios Públicos) (Mexico): Boys, Girls, and Youth Using Public Spaces will motivate children from ages 8- to 10 in Calnali, Mexico, to become more active in their daily lives through sports. The children will participate in sports as well as help to revitalize the municipality’s public spaces where they will be playing. The parks will provide the children outlets for encouraging healthy lifestyles, decreasing the amount of time they usually spend watching television or playing video games, as well for fomenting social ties to the community’s residents. This project can be easily replicated in other communities, increasing the number of children who are more active and healthy and bringing a community together that would otherwise be divided.

                  16. Pinocchio: An Interactive Childhood Obesity Project (Pinocho: Proyecto Interactivo de la Niñez Sobre Obesidad Infantil) (Mexico): Pinocchio: An Interactive Childhood Obesity Project will conduct participatory and dynamic workshops addressing the issue of childhood obesity for children ages 6 to 12 in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Providing practical advice, Pinocchio will educate parents and children on simple steps they can take at home and at school to reduce childhood obesity. The project will also highlight self-esteem issues and motivate students to make conscientious decisions about their lives. Pinocchio hopes to reduce the stigma associated with overweight and obese people and increase the level of nutritional education in Aguascalientes.

                  17. Your Prevention in Movement (Tu Prevención en Movimiento) (Mexico): Your Prevention in Movement will organize group-oriented exercise activities to demonstrate to the population of Mexico City, that dedicating only 10 minutes of daily physical activity can make a large impact on the prevention of chronic diseases. Using public spaces and parks, groups will gather for exercises ranging from tug-of-war and obstacle courses to aerobic exercises and dancing. These exercises will be coupled with informative talks about proper nutrition, how to exercise at home, and how to attain information about healthy, active living from local organizations. Your Prevention in Movement aims to recruit 150 to 200 people to participate in these group activities three days a week for nine months. The participants will complete a survey to measure their knowledge and whether they are implementing any changes at home.

                  18. Your Value is Health (Tu Valor es Salud) (Mexico): Your Value is Health will lead activities at primary and secondary schools in Michoacan, Mexico, on the importance of good nutrition while integrating important topics related to the students’ self-esteem and self-image. With the support of the school’s administration, Your Value is Health will teach the students about obesity, physical activity, and taking care of one’s overall health. Cafeteria personnel and school administrators will be encouraged to participate in the program. Using interactive methods by demonstrating various balanced meals and alternatives to what is provided at the cafeteria, Your Value is Health will empower the students to take action and control their own eating habits.

                  19. Cooking Knowledge (Cocisaber) (Nicaragua): Cooking Knowledge will educate parents and youth in a rural area of Managua, Nicaragua, on how to provide their families with a balanced diet. Many people on the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua purchase groceries without having a full knowledge and understanding of whether they are supplying a well-balanced meal to their families and, many times, discard the most nutritious portion of the produce. Cooking Knowledge will provide vital information to parents and youth about the nutritional value of food and how to increase it in their families’ diets. The project will also create a support group for the parents where they can exchange information, experiences, and recipes.

                  20. Cultural Agenda for Indigenous Children for Nutritional Education (Agenda Cultural de la Niñez Indígena por la Educación Nutricional) (Panama): Cultural Agenda for Indigenous Children for Nutritional Education will form a dancing troupe of twenty Kunas indigenous children from Panama City, Panama. The children ages 12 to 16 will learn indigenous dances, strengthening their cultural ties while exercising. Cultural Agenda for Indigenous Children for Nutritional Education will support and encourage proper nutrition by providing the young dancers with traditional Kuna diets - the seeds of bananas, cacao, maize, and yucca. Workshops will also be conducted where videos with culturally-based themes will be shown and lessons on traditional cooking techniques and recipes will be taught.

                  21. Asunción, You Look Better on a Bike (Asunción, En Bici Te Ves Mejor) (Paraguay): In support of the United Nations’ creation of World Bicycle Day, Asunción, You Look Better on a Bike aims to raise awareness on the environmental impact of cars, the high economic costs of driving, and the health benefits of riding a bicycle. The project will promote the use of bicycles as a mode of transportation in Asunción, Paraguay, and implement a monthly Pedestrian and Bicycle Day in the city. Through lectures and workshops as well as informational materials, the public will be educated about sustainable urban transportation. In the future, Asunción, You Look Better on a Bike hopes the government will create bicycle lanes in the roads to further encourage bicycle use.

                  22. National Camping Trip for Young Agents of Change (Campamento Nacional de Jóvenes Agentes de Cambio) (Paraguay): National Camping Trip for Young Agents of Change will plan a large, annual camping trip for youth 12- to 20-years of age where they will participate in active discussions and workshops. The agents of change will learn the importance of and how to overcome potential obstacles associated with a good education, physical and mental health, and culture. The ultimate goal of the trip is for the agents to become leaders and become involved in civic activities, teaching their peers the lessons instilled in them during the trip. National Camping Trip for Young Agents of Change will seek outside sponsorship and support from the government for the materials that will be used during the trip and to help with the expansion of the program to a greater number of youths throughout Paraguay.

                  23. The Value of Life (El Valor de la Vida) (Paraguay): The Value of Life disagrees with the nutritional choices students are making in Asunción, Paraguay, especially in regards to breakfast. Students typically do not have breakfast at their homes and buy processed junk food, beginning their days without the proper nutrition to remain attentive during class. The Value of Life would like to raise awareness in five schools in Asunción on the importance of proper nutrition and its effects on their academic achievement. The project will also begin a campaign for the cafeterias to provide healthy and economic choices on their menus. The Value of Life aims to expand to other schools in Asunción and form an alliance with the Parents Federation of Paraguay (Federación de Padres de Paraguay).

                  24. Promotion of Hip Hop Culture (Promoción Cultura Hip Hop) (Paraguay): Promotion of Hip Hop Culture will conduct workshops showcasing all aspects of hip hop culture, including music, dance, and art in San Lorenzo, Paraguay. Historically, the hip hop culture has been informal and socially inclusive. As such, Promotion of Hip Hop Culture will work to ensure that all social groups are included in their project through creative means. Forty children of all ages and skill sets will be recruited to learn hip hop dance for six months, at the end of which they will perform in a public square. The students will also have the opportunity to showcase their skills through graffiti and rap. Promotion of Hip Hop Culture will foment leadership skills and create a better sense of community for those involved, learning to work with each other for one common goal, a successful performance. The culmination of this project will be the third annual FusionArte Festival.

                  25. Health and Sports without Barriers (Salud y Deporte sin Barreras) (Paraguay): Health and Sports without Barriers seeks to integrate special needs youth athletes into regular sports and games. Students will volunteer their schools in Asuncion, Paraguay, to listen to a presentation about the project and meet some of the special needs athletes. Health and Sports without Barriers hopes to recruit 80 youths for a leadership workshop, organized with the Special Olympic Staff in Paraguay, and learn about the special needs athletic programs. The workshop will emphasize importance of accepting each other’s differences through sports. Health and Sports without Barriers will help youth develop important leadership skills while also teaching them about active living and healthy lifestyle choices for all.

                  26. Thank You to Life (Gracias a la Vida) (Peru): Thank you to life believes that through the achievement of mental and physical balance, many illnesses can be prevented or alleviated.

                  Thank you to life will incorporate the use of non-traditional therapies, including aromatherapy, yoga, tai chi, music therapy, and water therapy, to foster good mental and physical health in people between the ages of 15 and 35 in Lima, Peru. Guided by experts in these fields, the participants will learn about good eating habits, about healthy practices, and how to take advantage of free time in workshops. The project will also form a network of agents with knowledge of non-traditional therapies who share these practices with members of the community.

                  27. Healthy Lunchboxes (Loncheras Saludables) (Peru): To support healthy lunches in schools, Healthy Lunchboxes will implement a lunch program in private schools in Lima, Peru, to subsidize healthy lunches in less fortunate schools. Proceeds from the sales of the nutritional lunches in six to nine private schools will be used to subsidize the lunches in the schools in northern Lima. They hope to reach two to three schools in vulnerable areas and begin a study to identify specific nutrients that are lacking in their diets and target those food groups. Parents in Northern Lima would also become involved through discussions on nutrition. As part of the project, Healthy Lunchboxes hopes to reach students with special dietary needs such as diabetes. The program would publicize their work to inspire other people to contribute and promote a sense of community and mutual respect.

                  28. ONAN SHINAN (Peru): ONAN SHINAN will disseminate information about the benefits of medicinal plants to the youth of the Shipibo Konibo indigenous population in Yarinacocha, Peru, between the ages of 12 to 29. The project will promote healthy lifestyles through balanced diets and the prevention of diseases, and will organize the community to combat predominant health issues. ONAN SHINAN will initially work to renovate the bio-garden already in existence to cultivate the medicinal plants to later be distributed to the community. This is will be followed by the official launch of ONAN SHINAN that will continue to educate and maintain the bio-garden. As the garden will belong to the community, the residents are ultimately responsible for maintaining the garden and will reap the benefits of the harvest.

                  29. Jeiel Meléndez (Puerto Rico): Jeiel Meléndez will recruit 11 youths to become health educators in Caguas, Puerto Rico. These youths will be trained in proper nutrition, physical training, self-esteem, healthy lifestyles, and stress management. After this initial step, the health educators will conduct workshops and lectures, and work in health fairs to teach children, adolescents, and the general population about healthy lifestyle choices. The audience will be engaged and actively participate in open discussions in the workshops as the trainers act out scenarios about making good nutritional decisions. Each year, the number of educators will increase, expanding the total number of people reached in Puerto Rico.

                  30. One Try for Life (Un Try por la Vida) (Uruguay): One Try for Life will teach 120 incarcerated recruits for three months the rules and skills needed to play rugby in Montevideo, Uruguay. Studies have shown that difficult contact sports teach sportsmanship and provide improved physical health, something lacking in the correctional facilities in Uruguay. The four teams will be evaluated by a sociological team from the University of Montevideo to determine its impact on the players (positive, negative, or no effect). If successful, the One Try for Life could form part of a rehabilitation program and expand its efforts. The Ministry of the Interior and the Uruguayan Rugby Union have pledged their support of the project and will provide equipment and their expertise to the venture.
                  A Sample of Recent PAHEF Projects in the Region