READERS PLEASE NOTE: This article was published
More than 60 companies and organizations have come together in an unprecedented move to fight childhood obesity.
National Hockey League (NHL) commissioner Gary Bettman, Canadian Olympic gymnast Rosie MacLennan and federal Health Minister Rona Ambrose were among the attendees at the ACTIVE AT SCHOOL announcement at Ryerson on Monday. The initiative brings together influential sport, wellness and health organizations to promote an hour of daily physical activity in Canadian schools.
The NHL, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, Bell Canada and Canadian Tire Corp. are among those participating. The groups have committed to work with both provincial and federal governments to offer their resources to curve the trend of inactivity among Canadian youth.
“The passion for hockey, and the joy of playing it, has been passed through generations of Canadian youngsters,” Bettman said. “To help build the next generation of hockey players, we need to ensure that Canadian students receive the amount of physical activity they require. We are proud to be a part of this outstanding initiative.”
According to the government of Canada, children who participate in 60 minutes of physical activity per day do better in school and have improved moods and self-confidence. Approximately 90 per cent of Canadian youth do not get the appropriate level of daily physical activity.
“We must help our children be more active at school, but we must also help our schools and teachers who are doing great work with the resources they have,” said Steve Wetmore, chief executive officer of Canadian Tire Corp. “Those companies and organizations that have the resources and tools to help our school system get more active need to step forward and make a difference.”
ACTIVE AT SCHOOL is a multi-year investment. More specifics are expected to be announced in the coming days.