It is important to establish the foundation for healthy diets early in life when eating habits and preferences are being formed. This is why we are promoting healthy eating and active lifestyles among children to help them achieve a healthy body weight into adulthood.
The Nestlé Healthy Kids Programme
We are doing this through our worldwide nutrition education initiative, the Nestlé Healthy Kids Global Programme, which promotes healthy lifestyles among school age children. Content is developed with local experts and tailored to local health and nutritional needs.
Our aim is to focus on boosting healthy lifestyles, good hygiene and increased physical activity for children in the region.
The Nestlé Healthy Kids Programme is currently implemented in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal.
Since its launch, the programme has reached more than 90,000 children and around 1,650 teachers in Central and West Africa. We look to impact 100,000 children by 2018.
Effectively measuring the long-term success of our programme is a key priority. We continue to work with our partners, including universities, to help us monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of our initiative. In November 2014, the University of Ghana’s Nutrition and Food Science Department released its first monitoring and evaluation results on the programme in Ghana. This showed that children that took part in the initiative were able to correctly identify more food groups at 19.2% and food nutrients at 34.2%, compared to those who did not participate (7.8% and 3.4% respectively).
In 2015, we developed a regional evaluation framework to align measurement and reporting based on four goals around balanced meals, drinking water, being active and maintaining good hygiene habits.
Milo Sport Development Programmes
We have also pledged to continue inspiring young people to get into sports and take part in physical activity through our Nestlé Milo Sport Development Programmes in Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana and Nigeria.
The programmes aim to encourage youngsters to participate in sports and increase their physical activity, while instilling life values of hard work, responsibility, fair play, discipline, perseverance and team spirit.
In Ghana, the brand headed the Milo Marathon and provided underprivileged children with running shoes to encourage them to participate in sports and lead a healthier life. In 2015 and 2016, Milo distributed 6,000 shoes to youngsters across the country in partnership with the Ghana Education Service.
The annual Milo Champions League, organised in collaboration with the Ghana Education Service and endorsed by the Ghana Football Association, brought together over 36,000 students from 2,000 schools across the country.
In Nigeria, the annual Nestlé Milo Secondary Basketball Championship engaged 60,000 participants in the 17th edition.
In Côte d’Ivoire, a new mother and child cross-country event was introduced in the country.
As part of the programme, a ‘Train the Trainer’ approach is also being developed to help school coaches encourage children to enjoy the benefits of taking part in sports.