Debrecen 2024 showcased its commitment to health at a JövőMűhely (FutureWorkshop) panel discussion on the 24th of May. 

Healthy living and movement-rich weekdays were the focus of the JövőMűhely (FutureWorkshop) in May. The theme of this month’s panel discussion was the “Move, Debrecen!” health initiative. Exercise is an important part of the initiative, but community is at the heart of it. Those who have joined one of the 3,000 programmes over the past three years have not only returned home with a healthier outlook on life, but have also built communities. That’s one of the biggest achievements the initiators can claim. Deputy Mayor Diána Széles says they gave healthy living a chance and they were right. According to the facts, they have already completed 3,000 programmes and 70,000 people have already taken part.  

Speaking about the numbers, DAEFI Director Csaba Papp said that DAEFI experts regularly measure and screen school students. The latest figures show that 13,800 pupils have been tested. The results show that there is a Hungarian average and a norm for children’s weight, depending on their age. A good result is the reference point of 50, which goes up to 100. The latest measurement shows that 16% of children are over 90 instead of 50. This means that almost a fifth of them are very seriously overweight. Yet here’s another figure, four percent are very skinny, especially among girls. Twenty percent of children in Debrecen have some kind of body image disorder. According to Csaba Papp, these results are already better than those measured at the time of the coronavirus. For example, 72 percent of children then had a posture disorder, a figure that has now fallen to 58 percent, but there is still no sign of a reduction. The director says this is also a consequence of the “gadget world”. The “Move Debrecen” movement is trying to improve this situation. 

Thanks to the “Move, Debrecen!” school health programme, more than 600 children between the ages of six and eighteen have been found to have a heart problem that needs to be followed up. Seventeen children with WPW syndrome were also screened. This is a syndrome that can lead to cardiac arrest during exercise, which unfortunately in many cases even resuscitation cannot help. Csaba Papp said that the parents were informed immediately and these children were operated on. The programme has already saved seventeen lives.

“Move, Debrecen!” initiative is already running in schools. It was reported that several institutions are working in partnership with the coordinators. Several of them were present at the workshop. One of them said that 22 students had been selected for the development programme, receiving lifestyle advice, liaising with parents and, of course, exercise. In one year they achieved such success that a child weighing over 110 kilos lost about 30 kilos. 

The programme coordinator of the “Move Debrecen!” school programme Zsófia Kanyó stressed that she believes that children now see coordinators not just as teachers, but as mentors. 

“It’s true that it’s not easy to get people to exercise regularly, and the word ‘regularly’ is very important here. However, by creating opportunities in many parts of the city, for example, many people only have to walk to the school gym a few streets away, it has become easier to reach these people, and this is the secret of Move Debrecen’s success,” Evelin Kovács, Health Promotion Programme Coordinator, said.

At the FutureWorkshop, it was said that “God has given us a gift of a health card”, which is 100 percent filled up, but that needs to be taken care of. The initiative, unique in the country, gives people of all ages the opportunity to exercise, and it is up to the people of Debrecen to take advantage of it.

Speaking of the FutureWorkshop, participants were not without plans for the future. Deputy Mayor Diána Széles said that she had contacted the Debrecen School Centre so that the young first-year students wouldn’t start the day at school by getting out their sports equipment. They would like to bring back the idea of having breathing exercises and spinal exercises in the first lessons every single day. 

The entire panel discussion, which also reveals the details of this initiative, will soon be available on the JövőMűhely YouTube channel.

Source: debrecen.hu

Author: Debrecen4U