Address of information system with evidences of research contribution and evidences of societal impact
Institute of Health Sciences, College of Medical Sciences, University of Rzeszow
Title of societal impact case study
Tackling Adolescent Obesity and promoting inclusion through nutrition trainings for disadvantaged youth” (TAO Project)
1. Research contribution
The main goal of the project is to minimize socio-economic factors affecting the occurrence of obesity among young people; strengthening social integration by implementing an e-learning didactic program focused on health education to combat discrimination among students with health disabilities.
The project consists of three parts:
- September – December 2018 – development of a nutrition guide for young people based on current scientific evidence and WHO guidelines (Annex 1);
- January – July 2019 – creation of an e-learning platform for young people on healthy eating and physical activity (Annex 2);
- September – December – creation of educational materials based on scientific evidence as didactic aids necessary for program implementation (Annex 3);
After finishing the last step, all content will be translated into other EU languages and then used for pilot training in partner schools. Students participating in classes during the trial period will be encouraged to develop projects related to the promotion of proper nutrition practices. The prize for the best ideas will be participation in mobility to Brussels. After the test period, educational materials will be made available to all students and teachers of partner schools.
So far, three international meetings have been organized as part of the project with members of the SAFE consortium, including one at the University of Rzeszów, to discuss the most important issues related to this venture
2. Evidence of research contribution
- Aneta Sokal – project coordinator,
- Scientific employees: Sara Jarmakiewicz-Czaja, Katarzyna Dereń, Edyta Łuszczki, Ewelina Polak, Justyna Wyszyńska
- Technical employee: Grzegorz Sobek
The College of Medical Sciences is a member of the SAFE (Safe Food Advocacy Europe) organization, the main initiator of the TAO project. The project (18PE005) is co-implemented with four other EU countries: Belgium, Germany, Italy, Greece as part of the funds obtained by SAFE (Safe Food Advocacy Europe) from the Erasmus + grant.
The College of Medical Sciences as a member of the TAO consortium was the main coordinator of the first part of the project, during which a textbook addressed to the children and the youth was created. Textbook based on current scientific evidence. In the following parts, the College was responsible for co-creating content that was then used when creating the e-learning platform (https://meet-tao.eu/,.) and teacher handbook containing lesson plans. The final versions of the handbooks are currently being prepared.
3. Characteristic of societal impact
In 2016, over 1.9 billion adults suffered from excess weight worldwide,and 650 million were sick because of obesity. In turn, this problem affected as many as 340 million children and adolescents aged 5-19 years. Forecasts indicate that for adults, they will increase to 2.16 billion and 1.12 billion by 2030, respectively.
Overweight and obesity are correlated with the development of diseases referred to as civilization diseases, which include, among others, type 2 diabetes, atherosclerosis and hypertension.
The Student’s Handbook - Nutrition Guide, developed on the basis of the latest scientific knowledge, is part of a larger project that aims to increase school youth awareness of rational nutrition, as well as reduce discrimination arising from eating disorders and promote integration in the school environment.
The specific objectives of the project include:
- social inclusion: by minimizing socio-economic factors affecting the occurrence of obesity among young people; strengthening social integration through the implementation of a didactic e-learning program focused on health education to combat discrimination among students with health dysfunctions - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQkuVVqx7ds&feature=emb_title; https://www.facebook.com/Meet.TAO/;
- changing eating habits among young people by making informed decisions related to the choice of food products;
- open education and innovative practices in the digital age; developing a textbook and e-learning platform for students and teachers on which educational materials will be available;
- school education: improving teachers' professional competences in the field of healthy eating and preventing obesity;
- creating educational materials based on scientific evidence;
- reducing healthcare costs associated with obesity-related health problems.
The next stage during the implementation of the project after its completion will be the entity's close cooperation with other educational and upbringing institutions.
4. Evidence of societal impact
In 2020, work on the second part of the project – an educational platform has been completed https://meet-tao.eu/
5. Justification of interdisciplinarity and breakhrough of the research
The meet-tao educational platform is the first international educational platform of this type on the subject of healthy lifestyles for young people. It was created in cooperation with specialists from the IT department and computer graphics. The platform was adapted to the group of recipients because it was tested by randomly selected people in this age group. Thanks to a comprehensive approach both in terms of nutrition, physical activity and support for people suffering from eating disorders - the platform will allow all recipients to find the information they need.