The TOP Star program is an exciting new initiative to address childhood overweight and obesity in preschool and childcare settings. The program is free to participate and offers many benefits and incentives!
Parents: is your child’s daycare a TOP Star daycare? Encourage them to become one today! As centers are endorsed, we will add their names to this website.
Why work with childcare providers?
It’s no secret that our nation is facing a childhood obesity epidemic. In fact, by the first grade, one in five Utah children are at an unhealthy weight. This suggests that the problem may begin – and can therefore be addressed – before a child reaches elementary school.
Nutrition and physical activity habits begin to take shape early on in life. Children learn, as with most things, by modeling the people around them. Because many children spend much of their day in child care settings, these environments are critical to the development of healthy behaviors.
How does the program work?
The TOP Star program begins with a self-assessment of the nutrition and physical activity environment at your center. The self-assessment will be done on your own – with no pressure – and there are no right or wrong answers. The assessment will help us work together to identify your center’s strengths and weaknesses and possible areas of improvement.
From there, you will work one-on-one with a representative from the Weber-Morgan Health Department to create an action plan for your facility. Your action plan will be unique to your facility and will focus on the areas of improvement identified in your self-assessment. Your representative will work with you to change policies and practices that support a healthy environment by providing additional assistance, information, guidance and support as needed.
As we work together to implement your action plan, you and your staff will benefit from educational workshops on childhood obesity, healthy eating, physical activity, personal health, breastfeeding support and working with parents to promote healthy weight behaviors at home.
What will you receive?
- Free Level 1 Health and Safety continuing education credit for you and your staff through the Early Childhood Career Ladder program
- Suggestions for and help in improving your facility’s nutrition and physical activity environment
- Ideas on how to improve your own health and wellbeing
- Handouts and information for parents
- Certificate of completion and TOP Star window cling
- Endorsement by the Utah Department of Health and the Weber-Morgan Health Department
- Listing as a TOP Star facility on the Utah Department of Health and the Weber-Morgan Health Department websites
- Listing as a TOP Star facility with Utah Childcare Resource and Referral
- Multiple incentive items along the way
What is expected of a participating facility?
- Timely completion of the self-assessment instrument
- Participation in a goal setting meeting
- Participation in staff workshops
- The commitment to work through your chosen improvements
If you would like to become a TOP Star facility, or for more information about the program, please contact:
Megan Passey 801-399-7192 or firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’re ready to enroll as a TOP Star facility, please complete the program enrollment form and fax it to 801-399-7185 or e-mail it to email@example.com. A program representative will contact you to get the ball rolling!
The TOP Star program is currently being piloted in Weber, Morgan, Davis and Tooele counties. If your childcare provider or childcare center is located outside of Weber or Morgan county, but is located in Davis or Tooele, please contact your local health department for more information. The program should be available statewide beginning in 2012.