In 2008-09, a rigorous, randomised controlled trial of the Healthy Dad, Healthy Kids (HDHK) program was conducted at the University of Newcastle.

The HDHK study targeted overweight fathers and found that fathers could be taught the skills to effectively manage their weight, and importantly, influence the activity and eating behaviours of their children. The project was recognised at the recen Be Active 09 Conference in Brisbane as the Best Paper in Health Promotion and Best Paper Overall from ore than 500 presentations. We now plan to adapt the HDHK program to a sustainable education program in regional communities to prevent unhealthy weight gain in children, prevent obesity in dads and promote family health.
Our goals are to (i) create healthier communities through strengthening school-community partnerships; and (ii) demonstrate that programs based on the best research evidence can make a difference in regional communities. The major aim of the proposed HDHK community program is to improve the health and quality of life of families from the Hunter Valley and help them develop the skills to combat the obesity epidemic. We would like to present our design and evaluation framework and strategies for community engagement and sustainability at the CO-Ops eorksho[. Our community-based participatory research is an approach that focuses on local relevance of health issues, collaborative partnerships between the researchers and community, builds on the strengths and resources of a community and promotes capacity building.
Project Manager- Victoria Clay

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