The meeting of tastes and the taste for meeting - years 2008-2010
A food education project for primary and middle schools in Latium Region
The project is linked to the competition “MI PIACE… UN MONDO”
Practicing sport, following a healthy lifestyle and a correct diet since childhood are the best ways to promote and maintain good health for lifetime.
To adopt a deskbound lifestyle and an unbalanced diet increases the risk to contract chronic degenerative disorders like obesity, diabetes, heart and circulatory diseases.
Over the last few years obesity and overweight have been considered a public health problem worldwide, in particular in developed countries, with remarkable consequences not only for health but from the social and economic point of view as well. Obesity control requires a multidisciplinary approach including nutritional and educational interventions which are very difficult in adulthood. This is why it is essential to adopt prevention and educational programs aimed at helping children to develop a healthy lifestyle during childhood in order to maintain this habit in adulthood.
Large migration movements characterize the new Italian social scenario. An ever more multiethnic society calls for attention to migrants’ health and to the need to set out effective preventive strategies, even having regard to food traditions In Italy, the number of foreign pupils is high and tends to rise, evidence that immigration in Italy is no longer a temporary phenomenon but a structural feature.
Promoting intercultural food education projects in schools is important to accustom children to a correct lifestyle through new communication channels and new “pass keys”.
NIHMP, the “Sapienza” University in Rome – Department of Animal and Human Biology and the Regional Office for Schools in Latium are preparing the project “Intergustando: the meeting of tastes and the taste for meeting” (year 2008/2010), addressed to all primary and middle schools in Latium Region.
- Provide training for teachers on food education with an intercultural approach;
- Organise educational activities aimed at developing a correct lifestyle;
- Spread the knowledge of nutrition habits of the most represented migrants’ native countries in Italy;
- Promote and emphasize the cultural heritage of foreign pupils in order to facilitate their school inclusion.
• Educational booklet
An educational booklet was prepared and distributed in all primary and middle schools in Latium Region.
It was a useful tool to deal with food education through an intercultural approach and a guidebook for the teachers during the participation in the Regional competition.
Seminars addressed to the teachers involved in health education were organized.
Each 3-hour seminar had two parts, one on theory and one practical. The first part dealt with migration issues, relation between nutrition and migration, education to a correct lifestyle (nutrition and sport). The practical part aimed at illustrating the aspects and the in-depth questions of nutrition and to give advice for the Regional competition.
Cultural mediators were involved in the implementation of the programme.
• Competition for primary and middle school’s classes: “Mi piace... un Mondo”
• Final award ceremony for all the pupils who took part in the competition, and with the participation of the Vocational School for Tourism, Hotel Management and Catering.
• An exhibition of all the works was set up for the prize-giving of the winner classes.