The HealthLink BC Eating and Activity Program for Kids helps B.C. children, teens and their families reach healthy weights and improve their overall health and quality of life. Families will discuss their health priorities and gain new skills. Staff will focus on supporting behaviour changes for healthy eating, active living and lifestyle habits. Program materials are tailored to meet family needs and values, plus address barriers to healthy living.
The program is available to B.C. residents between the ages of 0 and 18, and their families. Any child, teen or family concerned they are above a healthy weight is eligible to participate. There is no cost to participate in this telephone-based program. Appointments can be scheduled Monday to Friday, including some evening appointments. All services are provided by a HealthLink BC pediatric dietitian and qualified exercise professional over the phone.
How to Register for the Program
There are 2 easy ways to register for the HealthLink BC Eating and Activity Program for Kids:
1. Health Care Provider Referral
Have your doctor or health care provider complete the referral form. A staff member will contact you to discuss your needs and the next steps.
To sign up for the program, call 8-1-1 and ask to speak to the HealthLink BC Eating and Activity Program for Kids staff.
Frequently Asked Questions
|How do I contact the HealthLink BC Eating and Activity Program for Kids staff?|
|Call 8-1-1 and ask to speak to the HealthLink BC Eating and Activity Program for Kids staff.|
|How do I know if my child is above a healthy body weight or is gaining weight too quickly?|
|Growth can be assessed using the Body Mass Index (BMI) to track your child’s growth over time. A health care provider or HealthLink BC Eating and Activity Program for Kids staff member can help you understand your child’s growth pattern and answer your weight related questions.|
|Who can participate in the program?|
|The program is available to B.C. residents (ages 0 to 18) and their families. Any child, teen or family concerned they are above a healthy weight is eligible to participate.|
|Do I need a referral to join the program?|
|We will accept self-referrals. We may ask your permission to contact your health care provider for more information for us to help you better.|
|When is the program available?|
|The program runs Monday to Friday, including some evening appointments.|
|Who are the services provided by?|
|Services are provided by a HealthLink BC pediatric registered dietitian and qualified exercise professional.|
|Can appointments be done in person?|
|Appointments are only done over the phone.|
|What is included in the program?|
|Included in the program are up to eight scheduled telephone calls providing education and counseling on a variety of healthy eating and active living topics. Ongoing support and follow up appointments to maintain the skills you have learned and the changes you have made are included.
You will be provided with a program workbook including educational materials and fun activities. Program materials are tailored to meet family needs and address barriers to health living.
|What topics are covered in the program?|
|Topics covered in the program may be a little different for every family, depending on your needs. We will guide you and your child or teen through various healthy living topics. Examples of topics include: family mealtimes, healthy drink choices, increasing fun physical activities, and reducing screen time.|
|What is the time commitment for the program?|
|Each program call will last about 45 to 60 minutes and you may talk with both the dietitian and exercise professional during that session. Follow up calls will help you maintain the skills you learned and are about 30 minutes each.
The program provides ongoing support for up to two years.
|What is the cost of the program?|
|There is no cost to participate in the program.|
For Health Care Providers
For answers to questions you may have about the program, or for a copy of the program referral form, click on the links below. For more information you may also call 8-1-1 and ask to speak to the HealthLink BC Eating and Activity Program for Kids staff.
Other B.C. Healthy Eating and Activity Programs for Children and Youth
Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do It! (MEND)
Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do It! (MEND) is a provincial program offered by the Childhood Obesity Foundation. This free program provides healthy lifestyle learning and activity sessions for children aged 5 to 7 and 7 to 13 who are above a healthy weight.
Physical Activity Line (PAL)
The Physical Activity Line (PAL) is a free physical activity and counselling service for British Columbians. Call toll-free 1-877-725-1149, or 604-241-226 in the lower mainland, to speak to a qualified exercise professional who will give you physical activity guidance suited to your needs and lifestyle.
ShapedownBC is a free behavioural weight management program that helps children, teens, and their families recognize and overcome their challenges to active living and healthy eating. Shapedown is an in-person program, currently being offered in Vancouver, Nanaimo, Langley/Surrey, and Kamloops.
Last updated: February 2016