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New initiative will encourage more children and adolescents to become physically active

The Novo Nordisk Foundation is focusing on ensuring that children and adolescents have a healthy weight. The Foundation has just opened a new application round in which applicants can seek grants for projects that will encourage more children and adolescents to move and be physically active.

Many children and adolescents in Denmark are sedentary for many hours in front of a screen, and only one quarter of 11- to 15-year-olds are physically active for the recommended 60 minutes a day. To strengthen the interest of children and adolescents in physical activity, the Novo Nordisk Foundation is providing the opportunity to apply for grants for testing new, innovative interventions than can increase physical activity among 10- to 15-year-olds.

“We find that many teenagers drop out of sports. This is really a shame, because many children enjoy participating in sports and being physically active, but they drop out in their teens. We therefore want to support projects that can test new methods that can help motivate children and adolescents to become physically active,” says Hanna Line Jakobsen, Head of Social and Humanitarian Grants, Novo Nordisk Foundation.

Improving the level of activity among children and adolescents has been associated with several important parameters, including bone and muscle strength, motor development, positive mental health outcomes and, to some extent, improved academic performance in subjects such as mathematics. The application round is the first of several initiatives from the Foundation focusing on preventing obesity among children and adolescents.

“We want to help reduce the number of children and adolescents who are overweight. One in five young people today are overweight when they leave school. We want to help to reverse this trend,” says Hanna Line Jakobsen.

The Foundation is making DKK 60 million available, and applicants may apply for grants for developing new methods and interventions or for supporting municipal and local initiatives (schools, after-school clubs, associations, etc.) that focus on promoting an active lifestyle among children and adolescents. Applications may also be submitted for grants for research projects that, for example, evaluate existing interventions.

The projects can target the general group of 10- to 15-year-olds or selected parts of it – including those at high risk of having a low level of activity, such as ethnic minority groups, teenage girls or socially disadvantaged children and adolescents.

Read more and apply here:

Further information

Christian Mostrup Scheel, Senior Press Officer, phone: +45 3067 4805, [email protected]