The goals of the Fit WIC ITCA Project were to:
- Improve the staff's comfort level with providing nutrition
and physical activity education.
- Re-focus nutrition education sessions to emphasize the
feeding relationship rather than the specific foods consumed.
- Offer new educational formats to participants, such as
facilitated discussion groups and classes for children.
The Fit WIC ITCA project achieved these goals by conducting
a variety of activities. To help staff members feel more comfortable
in discussing weight issues with WIC clients, staff members
themselves were assisted in developing their own personal
goals for nutrition and physical activity. By engaging in
the behaviors they are promoting with clients, WIC staff members
would feel better equipped to help clients develop and achieve
their own goals.
Staff received training and tools to help them teach about
parenting strategies that are applicable to mealtimes. A new
care plan and questionnaire was developed to elicit information
about feeding relationship issues from WIC caregivers during
individual counseling sessions.
Staff learned skills to lead discussion groups with adults.
Additionally, new classes for children were developed. These
classes involved children in reading a story about food, helping
to prepare a healthy snack, and participating in fun, physical
Successes were realized in all project focus areas. Staff
members who participated in project intervention activities
demonstrated more positive changes in their own lifestyle,
such as an increase in exercise, a change in diet, or watching
less television, than did staff in the control group. Caregivers
who participated in group activities expressed an appreciation
for a change of pace and an opportunity to interact with others
during their WIC visit. Staff members who facilitated group
activities with caregivers or children initially felt unprepared
for their role, but were gratified by the experience once
they had some practice.
Fit WIC Inter Tribal Council of Arizona
Mindy Tomkins, RD
Inter Tribal Council of Arizona