January 02, 2013

It Takes a Village, Or a City, to Tackle Obesity

The success the city of Fitchburg, Mass., is having in reducing childhood obesity rates is drawing praise. The town was recently featured in an NPR piece for its multidisciplinary approach to tackling obesity.

Fitchburg is one of two cities participating in a NICHQ-led learning community, which is part of a grant know as Mass in Motion Kids, or MiM Kids. MiM Kids is part of a larger nationwide initiative and funded by the Center for Disease Control.

In MiM Kids, NICHQ brings together clinic and community-based providers that serve children from schools, community health centers and childcare centers in the cities of Fitchburg and New Bedford, Mass., and trains the teams in advocacy, motivational interviewing, obesity prevention and treatment, and quality improvement methods. Through a variety of in-person gatherings, monthly calls and coaching sessions with NICHQ staff, the teams build their capacity for assessment and treatment of pediatric obesity in the community.

“The work Fitchburg has been doing is fantastic,” says Lexi Abel, NICHQ’s MiM Kids project manager. “The initial work featured in the radio segment is what led Fitchburg to be chosen for the MiM Kids grant. They are setting the standard and will hopefully be an example for what is possible for other cities and towns around the state and across the nation.”

Related Information

  • Listen to the radio segment on WBUR or read its accompanying story
  • Read more about the MiM Kids project
  • Learn more about NICHQ’s portfolio of obesity projects