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1 COM-451-501 Integrated Strategic Communication Group Project “The Effect of a Modern Lifestyle on Childhood Obesity” Hamda Khalifa 200720965 Maryam Ali 200721333

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    COM-451-501 Integrated Strategic Communication

    Group Project

    The Effect of a Modern Lifestyle on Childhood Obesity

    Hamda Khalifa 200720965

    Maryam Ali 200721333

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    This Project is dedicated to Maryam Mirza who passed away


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    Table of Contents Section Page

    Executive Summary 4


    -Analyzing the situation 4

    - Organizational Analysis 5

    -Analyzing the public

    -Analyzing the key characteristics of the key public 6


    -Goals 6

    -Position 7

    -Objectives 7

    -Proactive strategy 7

    -Reactive strategy 8

    -Message Source and Spokesperson 8

    -Message appeals 9

    -Verbal Communication 9

    -Nonverbal Communication 10


    -Pre-campaign 11

    --Press Releases 11

    -Website 11

    -Buzz 12

    -Photos and Captions 12

    -Studio Interviews 13

    -Special Events 14

    -Distribution 14

    Schedule 15

    Budget 15

    Evaluation Plan 16

    References 16

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    Executive Summary

    The youth of our society not only here in the UAE but possibly world wide are

    consumed with electronic video games and the cyber world. Children here in the

    UAE not only enjoy playing for long constant hours during the day but they are highly committed to their hobby and spend a lot of money in purchasing the necessary

    attire to maintain their habit.

    The problem that we wish to state is not about the excessive hours spent in

    front of the television or PC but the fact that hours of the day are wasted playing

    video games indoors and not being used to exercise out doors. In our current

    generation children prefer to spend whatever free time they have holding their gaming

    console. As a result of this the number of over weight children has increased greatly

    and the number of children getting diabetes has gone up as well. Children nowadays

    are inactive they dont enjoy moving outdoors in the fresh air they stay in one spot for

    hours if they arent forced to move.

    Therefore our campaign is to raise awareness to parents and institutions to

    urge their children to be more active in their childhood and not stay cooped up in their

    living room or bedroom remaining inactive and gaining weight. We also would like

    to show kids by using their imagination the different games they could play outside

    which hopefully will encourage them to go and have fun with their siblings or friends

    and as a result make them healthier.

    We will form a series of talks to present to the families and institutions that

    will contain solutions and a well-designed program that will consist of different

    activities that will get their children to be more active. Whereas for the children we

    will form an interactive video since thats what they are interested in that explains the

    benefits of being active and the how playing video games is not good for their health. Analyzing the situation Her in the UAE the situation that is presented to us is that the current youth of

    the nation is suffering from an inactive and unhealthy lifestyle, this issue has been

    voiced to us by leading newspapers such as the gulf news where it was mentioned by

    Suzanne Trease, Chair of the Department of Health and Physical Education, Trease

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    blames a sedentary lifestyle for the rise of obesity in the UAE. "A lot of them

    [students] have things done for them," she said. Trease said that from observation,

    physical activity is not typically part of the Emirati culture and is therefore not

    instilled in children by parents(Naidoo, & Moussly, 2009). Therefore the position we

    face with our campaign idea is how do we convince institutions and families to

    incorporate a more active program for children in school schedules and households.

    This is important as they state further down the article, Trease stressed the urgency

    of incorporating healthy living into UAE's lifestyle. "It's imperative we educate this

    generation and those to come, about healthy living because if we don't, life

    expectancy will grow even shorter. If you can walk moderately for 30 minutes a day

    and keep your heart rate above 130 beats per minute, that's a great start"(Naidoo, &

    Moussly, 2009). Then on the other hand we have the children that we want to

    encourage and motivate to actually participate in these activities. The reason why this

    may be a challenge is because schools may view this as them needing to acquire a

    larger budget to provide staff and equipment in order for the children to play activities

    with the correct supervision. Then we have the parents who may lead a very busy

    lifestyle with work therefore they may say they have no time to accompany their

    children since they have no time or not a large enough budget to sign their kids to a

    sporting club. Our campaign will view the different ways in which we can approach

    this and convince them how to get kids moving without costing too much.

    The situation with the kids may be a bit more difficult since if they are

    accustomed to no moving a lot it would be hard to convince them to do so. After

    getting them to do it the first time they may find themselves being fatigued and then

    the second time may not be to keen on being active so we should find a way to keep

    them committed and encouraged until they feel that being active is part of their daily


    Organizational Analysis

    The client we will be representing is the Dubai Health Authority. The reason

    is because the government of Dubai has expressed great concern in the past about the

    increase of obesity within the Emirate. This apprehension was displayed in an article

    released by the Dubai Health Authority where they mentioned, Now-a-days, obese

    children under 10 years of age have been suffering with type 2 diabetes, which was

    earlier considered as adult-onset diabetes, affecting people over age 40, (Jindal,

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    2010). Therefore, there is an obvious concern for childrens overall health since this

    isnt the first health awareness campaign hosted by the Dubai Health Authority there

    were multiple in the past that were not highly successful. So hopefully by allowing us

    to project the message across to the designated audience we would be satisfying our

    client and public.

    Analyzing the public

    "The UAE records one of the highest rates of obesity in the world with almost

    70 per cent of the population suffering from the malady." But there's limited data on

    obesity in the region, which is the reason for the research study(Naidoo, & Moussly,

    2009). UAE children have 1.8 times the rate of overweight compared to international standards at 10 and 18 years of age, (Al-haddad, Little, & Abdul Ghafoor, 2005).

    The public that we wish to appeal to are young children from grade 4-9 of both

    genders which would make their age range start from 9 in grade 4 and go up to 15 in

    grade 9. This is because during this age they are very much inactive which results in

    them being overweight, Nearly 78 per cent of UAE children lack the amount and

    type of physical activity that would protect them from cardiovascular disease and

    keep them healthy, according to a study conducted by the World Health

    Organization, (Zaman, 2010).

    The second audience we wish to acquire is educational institutions here in

    Dubai since children spend most of their day in school so we have to try and make a

    change there, which hopefully will influence the child and allow them to carry the

    habit home.

    Parents have a large part to play in the up bringing of the new generation

    therefore, we hope to be able to persuade and enlighten parents about this ordeal.


    By the end of our campaign in duration of 2 months we will have educated

    parents, children and institutions on the benefits of exercise. We will have

    contributed to the nutrition and activity programs of schools. Parents will be more

    aware on the seriousness of the matter and will be able to provide solutions easy for

    them and their kids. The children will be weighed in after 2 months and weight loss


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    We would like our campaign to be viewed as trying to improve the lifestyle

    and health of the youth in Dubai. We do not only focus on parents and institutions

    although they play a huge role in the shaping of a child, we tap into the psyche of the

    children and try to understand what makes the direct their time and energy to playing

    these games. Moreover we dont only change the food consumed we give reasonable

    and attainable solutions that can easily be interpreted by parents and schools. Our

    main interest here is the children for it is a shame that they spend their childhood in

    front of a screen they are missing out on the world around them.


    By the end of our campaign in duration of 2 months we will have educated

    parents, children and institutions on the benefits of exercise; specifically by a series of

    talks and actual instructive classes on how to get the children to move and play

    activities we will measure this by the number of parents and faculty sign up and agree

    to this. We will have contributed to the nutrition and activity programs of schools

    this will be checked by the end of the campaign this would visible on the schedules to

    that the schools incorporate what theyve learnt. The children will be weighed in after

    2 months and weight loss recorded.

    Proactive strategy Ourcampaigniscreatedtospreadawarenesstoparentsandchildrenthatare8yearsoldupto16yearoldteenagersaboutobesityandoverweight,specificallytoencouragechildrentostartengaginginmorephysicalactivitiesinsteadofspendinghoursplayingvideogames.Thefirststrategythatourcampaignisplanningtouseistoreachschools.Theplanistoincreasephysicalactivitiesandemphasizesportsandexerciseincludinggamesthatareentertainingandfunandwillmotivatethekidstoparticipateandenjoytheirtimeatthesametime.Foodisaveryimportantelementtodecreasethisproblemandguideparentsandchildrentoliveaveryhealthylifestyle.Schools

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    shouldbeeducatedandawareaboutthefoodtheyareprovidingandguidedtoprovidehealthychoices,andeducatingschoolsispartofourcampaignsstrategytospreadawarenessanddecreaseobesityfromanearlyage.Parentsbeingeducatedisaveryimportantelement,ourcampaignwillcreateaprograminschoolstoeducateparentsandscheduledifferentlecturestocoverdifferentaspectstoteachparentshowtoprovideahealthylifestyletotheirkids,controlthenumberofhoursspentonvideogamesandfightobesity.Reactive strategy Reactivestrategyispreparedifparentswereindenialandwerenotacceptingtheideathattheirkidsneedhelpandarenotawareofhowserioustheproblemis,andifkidswerenotreactingtotheprogramandrefusingtoparticipate.Thereforewewillusetheshockstrategytoalarmparentswiththetruerealityoftheirchildrenscondition.Inthiscaseourcampaignwillprovidesolidproofandtrytodeliverthemessagetoparentsonhowcrucialtheproblemisandhowitcouldaffecttheirkidsinthefutureafterasufficientamountofresearchisconductedinthematter.Usingthehelpofdoctorsandnutritionisttoexplain,educateandclearuptheproblemtoparentstoconvincethemtotakeactionsandchangetheirchildrenslifestyleandjustifythereasonwhyweapproachedthismatterwithsuchapprehensionbecauseitsamatterthatrequiresseriousaction.Ifthechildrenrefusedtoparticipateandmakechanges,theplanistochangetheroutineofexercisesandactivitiesandprovidephysicalactivitiesthataremorecreativeandexcitingthatkidsmightresponseto,andallowingkidstousetheirownimaginationandtranslatetheirvideogamesintogamesthatrequirephysicalactivities.Message source and spokesperson Tobeabletoeducateparentsandcreateawarenessstrongsourcesandeffectivespokespersonisneeded.ApediatricianfromtheAlWaslHospitalwouldwillbegivinglecturestoparentsinArabicwithofcoursetranslatedfactstobehandedoutinEnglishandArabicaboutobesityandhowitisamajorcauseofmanydiseases.InadditionachildrenssportstrainerwillgivelecturesinEnglishtoemphasizehowphysicalactivitiesisextremelyimportantandcrucial

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    inachildsday.Arealexampleofachildthatcompletedourprogramwhobeganoverweightandusedtospendmostofhistimeinactive,buthasfacedthisproblemandlostweightbydecreasingthetimespentindoorsandsubstitutingitbyexcitingphysicalactivitiesandexerciseinstead.Themainspokespersontoinspirekidswillbeacelebritythatislovedandknownbetweenouragegroup,thefamouslocalfootballplayerIsmaeelMattarwhowilltalktothekidsandwillgiveatrainingsessionofexercisestomotivateandinspirethekids.Message appeals Ourcampaignsstrategyistousetwodifferentmessageappeals.Thefirstmessageappealwewillusetodeliverthemessageisemotionalappealthereasonwewouldusethis form of appeal is, Pathos, also called the pathetic or emotional appeals, persuades audiences by arousing the emotions,(Lanham 74).Theproblemofobesityatayoungagewillneedthehelpofparents,thereforeemotionalappealtoreachtheparentsandkidswillbeinourbenefittotouchtheparentsemotionsandencouragethemtojointheirkidsandhelpthem.Thesecondstrategyourcampaignwilluseisfearappeal.Sincefearisknowntobeoneofthestrongestemotions,itshouldimpacttheparentsandchildrentobeaware of how serious and dangerous obesity is. This is stated through research, The

    meta-analysis suggests that strong fear appeals produce high levels of perceived

    severity and susceptibility, and are more persuasive than low or weak fear appeals.

    The results also indicate that fear appeals motivate adaptive danger control actions

    such as message acceptance and maladaptive fear control actions such as defensive

    avoidance or reactance (Witte, 2011).Verbal communication

    Strong words and quotes such as Joint problems -- overweight people are

    more likely to get defects in load-bearing limbs (Lang, 2011), willbeusedtocommunicatetoparents.Clearsimpleandeffectivelanguagewillbeusedinouradvertising,postersandbrochures.Simplebuteffectivequoteswillbeused,quotesfromthebestnutritionist.Brochureswillbedistributedonparentsthatwillincludeadviceandguidancetocontrolkidsactivitiesandencouragethemtodecreasethetimespentonvideogamesandsubstituteitbyphysicalactivities.

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    TalksinbothArabicandEnglishwillbeheldandgivenbyspecialtrainersthatwillworkalongsidethechildrenduringtheiractivitiesthatwilleducateparentshowtocontrolthenumberofhoursthattheirkidsspendonvideogames,andhowtoencouragetheirkidstogooutandplaygamesthatneedphysicalactions.Therewillbeclassesthatwillalsoeducateparentstobeabletocreatehealthymealsfortheirkidsthatwillincludehealthychoicesbutisdeliciousatthesametime.InadditionsomelectureswillbeheldbyaspokespersonofthecampaignanexampleisthefootballerIsmaeelMattartospreadawarenessbetweenbothparentsandkidsaboutthesideeffectsofbeingoverweightandthelackofexercise.Socialmediawillbeapartofourverbalcommunicationstrategy,facebookpageandblogswillbecreatedinbothEnglishandArabictoprovideaspaceforparentstodiscussandsuggestnewideasandadvicetootherparentstoencouragetheirkidstoparticipateandstartaddingphysicalactivitiesondailybasis.NonverbalcommunicationNonverbal communication will be mostly used to reach kids since it is an

    easier way for the kids to absorb and understand the problem through images and

    symbols instead of verbal communication. Posters and images will be displayed to the

    kids to spread awareness. Pictures of a child that suffers from being overweight, with

    a picture of the same child after following a healthier life style looking much slimmer

    and healthier. Some images of internal organs of people that suffer of obesity will be

    displayed as well, to allow children to be able to see what really happens inside of

    their bodies and how it is affecting their health. Music will be also one of our

    campaigns strategies to encourage the kids in their exercise routines to create a fun

    and exciting atmosphere. We will create a song made up of the sound clip of the

    infamous video game Super Mario that will incorporate other current music sounds,

    to be able to communicate and reach the kids indirectly and try to make the physical

    exercises fun and entertaining for the kids. A logo will be also created for our

    campaign. The logo will have been designed to express the purpose of our campaign,

    which is creating a healthy lifestyle for our young generation. Example below:

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    Before launching our campaign, intensive research was made to be able to

    pick the locations that our campaign will take place in. We looked through schools

    and made research to be able to find the numbers and statistics that will help us make

    the decisions. Some schools had a higher rate of obesity than other schools which

    made it clear where our campaign should take place in and where our expertise will

    be most needed. Our campaign has to first take permission from the government,

    head masters of schools, and also the parents before launching the campaign. Letters

    will be sent to parents through students to get permission and approval of parents to

    start the campaign and the new programs in their childrens schools.

    Press releases:

    We will be sending out a press release specifically announcement releases that

    will inform the audience about the campaign and will interest the anticipated

    audience. A press release will be send to numerous newspapers to reach the

    educational institutions, business institutions, and parents. To reach our targeted

    audience we decided to send the press release to four newspapers AlBayan, Emarat

    Alyoum, Gulf News, 7 Days. Our choices are local Arabic newspapers with mass

    audience and are newspapers that are very common to the Arabic readers. Al Bayan

    newspaper and Emarat Alyoum newspaper are Arabic newspapers that are very

    popular in the UAE and have large audience. For English readers the choice of Gulf

    news and 7days newspaper was made to send the press release. Gulf news is a very

    popular and common English newspaper therefore it is to our benefit to send the press

    release through Gulf news. 7 DAYS newspaper is a free of charge English newspaper

    that is provided in many places such as work locations, universities, schools, petrol

    stations, coffee shops, and restaurants that will help spread our press release and reach

    our targeted audience.


    Our campaign will create an internet homepage that will be very informative

    and helpful and a way to communicate with the audiences that are interested in our

    program. For parents that are interested in our campaign and program this website

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    will provide information about our program, tips and advice to a healthier lifestyle for

    their kids, and audio recordings of the lectures that our campaign will hold. Parents

    will be able to participate and join the program easily through the website. It will be

    an effective way of communication between the campaign and the targeted parents.


    Text messages through mobile phones will be sent to the parents in schools

    about the launch of our campaign to create a buzz and directly reach our audience. In

    addition, a face book page will be created to post effective images and videos and to

    provide a space for our audience to communicate and share their suggestions and

    opinions. There will also be a Blog that will be held by the campaign that will include

    images, news, updates and information about our campaign.

    Photos and Captions

    Diagrams explaining the internal and future dieses caused by obesity will

    allow us to gain more of an impact because visually to see whats going on inside the

    body may effect the children and parents to take action. And example is presented


    Images of showing the result after committing to having a healthier lifestyle to

    encourage both parties that it is possible to loose weight.

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    If children maintain the lifestyle they are currently living at the weight they are living

    we will present to them images of themselves at the age of 40.

    Hopefully the images presented will make parents and children aware of the

    seriousness of the situation they are in and hopefully entrust us in taking action

    towards their weight loss and improving their lifestyle.

    Studio Interviews

    An interview would be conducted with a certified pediatrician from Al Wasl

    hospital in Dubai where questioned would be asked about over all childrens health.

    Questions would be asked about the seriousness of being overweight and the multiple

    diseases that would result from leading an unhealthy lifestyle. The interview would

    be pre-recorded and aired as a few minute show where factual information would be

    given out to viewers.

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    Special Events

    A sports day event before the launch of the campaign would allow us to

    interact with our audience and gauge the level of fitness amongst the children. We

    would also get the children excited about participating further in more active games.

    This event would be held at the prime location of the campaign.


    To distribute the informational brochures we would give each student a

    designated information pack that they can take away with them. And for the parents

    and educational instructors we would give them at the end of the lecture session an

    information pack that contains the key point mentioned by the speaker and

    informational brochures.

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    Schedule and Budget

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    Evaluation plan

    After having completed the entire set period of assigned activities and the

    change of nutritional intake in both the educational institutions and households, we

    would from a weigh in day for all who participated to monitor and document the

    overall improvement.

    To ensure this healthy lifestyle continues we will ask schools whether or not

    that wish to implement the nutritional recipes into their menus. Moreover institutions

    will be asked if they wish to incorporate more of an active program to keep children


    After the ending of the campaign the families and teachers will be able to

    access further guiding on how to improve the lifestyle of their children online. This

    way they will be able to reach our experts and upload improvements in their

    childrens overall health and hopefully encourage other struggling families to stay



    Al-haddad, F., Little, B., & Abdul Ghafoor, A. (2005, January). Childhood

    obesity in united arab emirates schoolchildren: a national study. Retrieved

    from http://www.fchs.ac.ae/fchs/uploads/Files/Semester%201%20-%202010-


    Jindal, N. (2010, July 12). Uae health ministry's anti-obesity programme

    targets teens. Retrieved from



    Lang, K. (2011). The dangers of childhood obesity . Retrieved from


    Lanham, Richard A. A Handlist of Rhetorical Terms. Berkeley: University of

    California Press, 1967.

    Naidoo, A., & Moussly, R. (2009, December 13). Youth obesity the uae's

    biggest problem. Retrieved from



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    Witte, K. (2011). A meta-analysis of fear appeals: implications for effective

    public health campaigns. Retrieved from


    Zaman, S. (2010, October 23). Inactive children in uae face heart disease risk.

    Retrieved from http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/inactive-children-in-uae-


    Image references:

    After few years:


    Before ad after pictures:


    Diagram of the internal effect of obesity:



    logo design: