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Adventists InStep for Life Teams

Every union, conference, church, school, university and health care organization in the North American Division is encouraged to form an Adventists InStep for Life team to coordinate activities that inspire healthy eating and physical activity and further awareness of childhood obesity. Individually we are limited in what we can accomplish. The metaphor of the body in Romans 12 reminds us that we function best as a whole. Each of us has a role to play in reducing childhood obesity. Together we can make a difference!

Who to Include

On the North American Division level, the Adventists InStep for Life team is made up of directors from the Adventists Community Services, Children’s Ministries, Communication, Education, Health Ministries, and Youth departments. We’ve also included key leaders from health care, universities, corporate wellness and the private sector. Each has brought a unique perspective to the challenge of childhood obesity and strategies for meeting this challenge as a church.

Prayerfully consider who you can invite to join you in your organization’s fight against childhood obesity. Include ministry leaders, health professionals, teachers, parents, youth, and people with a strong interest in health. Create a diverse group that includes people from various backgrounds. Personally invite each one to a meeting to explore how your team can get involved.

Adventists InStep for Life Team Responsibilities

  • Select a team coordinator, if you do not yet have one. 
  • Become acquainted with the challenges of childhood obesity and the Adventists InStep for Life initiative.
  • Explore how this initiative fits into your organization’s vision, mission and existing ministries. Important questions to discuss are, Why are we doing this? Does it fit our mission? What does God want to accomplish through us?
  • Assess your organization and the community you serve through the lens of childhood obesity. Utilize surveys, focus groups and meetings with key leaders to learn about the demographics and needs of your members and community. What are people most concerned about? How is the issue of childhood obesity affecting them? What challenges are they facing in getting nutritious foods and meeting the recommendations for physical activity?
  • Identify the resources in your organization and community. Who would support this initiative? What are their skills and interests? What programs already exist that address the issues related to childhood obesity? What is missing?
  • Brainstorm ways to meet the Adventists Instep for Life goals in your organization and community. Review the ideas for churches, schools and health care organizations to jumpstart your creative thinking. Define your priorities and set realistic organizational goals. For example, a church might start a walking club that meets 30 minutes before prayer meeting and host a summer feeding site during Vacation Bible School. A school might integrate the PALA and NAD active lifestyle awards into their curriculum and begin a community garden. A university might sponsor a 5K run/walk for the community. Or a health care organization might partner with local farmers to bring a farmers market into areas of the community that don’t have access to fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Introduce the Adventists InStep for Life initiative and the goals you have set to your conference, church, school, university or health care institution. Identify the best way to communicate to your target audience. It is important to keep this initiative before them regularly through announcements, posters, PowerPoint presentations, newsletters, etc.
  • Carry out your plan to motivate and activate your members and community to engage in and promote a healthy lifestyle, meeting regularly to evaluate its effectiveness. What have you learned? What do you see as your next step? Measurement and evaluation are essential components of all programs to ensure that your efforts are making a difference. 
  • Recognize the accomplishements of your members in physical activity and other achievements related to your goals.
  • Report your organization’s activities (miles, feeding sites, gardens, farmers' markets) and stories.

Sponsoring Organizations
Seventh-day Adventist ChurchHope ChannelAdventist HealthCareAdventist HealthAdventist Health SystemKettering Health NetworkLoma Linda University - Health System
NAD Health MinistriesNAD Youth Pathfinder Adventurer CampAdventist Family MinistriesAdventist Chaplaincy MinistriesAdventist Education
Children's MinistriesNAD Disabilities MinistriesAdventist Community ServicesNAD Women's MinistriesNAD Ministerial Department
The material in this website is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any illness, metabolic disorder, disease or health problem. Always consult your physician or health care provider before beginning any nutrition or exercise program. Use of the programs, advice and information contained in this website is at the sole choice and risk of the reader.