EU Commissioner welcomes the engagement of 70 European Stakeholders to promote a #HealthyLifestyle4All
How can we encourage key players to get involved in the promotion of healthy lifestyles? JOGG/Youth Health Community (YHC), the International Sport and Culture Association (ISCA), and Schuttelaar & Partners drove this idea forward and invited stakeholders to get on board. Over the summer months, about 70 organizations and individuals signed the call to action, aimed at making the transition towards healthier lifestyles possible for all Europeans, with Commissioner Gabriel recognizing these efforts this past Monday during the #BeActive awards.
During the encounter, the three parties handed over the list of signatories of the call to action, which was launched at the HealthyLifestyle4All event, co-organized by ISCA, JOGG/YHC and S&P, and hosted by MEP Tomasz Frankowski in June at the European Parliament.
After receiving the list of the organisations, Commissioner Gabriel shared her enthusiasm: “I am very glad to see the momentum that has been built with our #HealthyLIfestyle4All initiative! This Call to Action is a significant contribution, and I am thrilled to see 70 organizations advocate for cross-sector action and commit to making healthier lifestyle choices possible for all Europeans. In this European Year of Youth 2022, I commend the focus on supporting our youth, for a concrete legacy of our joint efforts with the European sport community. Let us build on the momentum in this second year of the #HealthyLifestyle4All initiative – together!”
This a much-needed call to action, given the recent numbers. Currently, almost two-thirds of adults and 1 in 3 children in the WHO European Region are living with overweight or obesity (WHO European Regional Obesity Report 2022). But numbers keep rising steadily, as a result of physical inactivity, unhealthy food intake, mental distress, and poor quality of life. The persistence of such unhealthy lifestyles has led to a surge of non-communicable and chronic diseases across Europe, coming to represent a real global challenge for society and forcing us to look for systemic change.
Change which these three organizations have already been working towards. That is the case of JOGG, a Netherlands-based organization which works on the basis of an integrated community-based approach - the JOGG-approach - in more than 200 Dutch municipalities, and which connects roughly a hundred other partners from society, fundamental and applied research and the business community to make the living environment of children and youth healthier. At the same time that ISCA, a non-governmental and not-for-profit umbrella association, delivered over 70 EU-funded projects, continued with its advocacy efforts for the role of grassroots sport in society and launched international campaigns, such as the European School Sports Day. Schuttelaar & Partners continues to make strides towards a healthier and more sustainable society, collaborating with non-profits, industry, institutions, and policymakers across all levels, for example, its noteworthy campaign towards a smoke-free start of newborns across the Netherlands has seen great success.
At present, the three organizations are continuing in their efforts to advocate for a society in which healthy choices become the easier choices by reaching out to policymakers and setting up a working meeting in which different stakeholders are given the opportunity to share their main learnings and join efforts in the near future.
Image source: European Union, 2022