The Sandbox Project Conference 2013
Thursday, 17 January 2013 from 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM (EST)
Registration is now closed. If you would still like to attend the event, please click here and contact us.
On January 17th, 2013, The Sandbox Project is hosting our 3rd national conference which will bring together community organizers, innovators, researchers, and advocates, for a two-day planning session, to identify strategies to improve the health of children and youth in Canada. Participants will identify and prioritise the community-based programming, public education campaigns, research initiatives and policies that are needed to improve the health of children, youth and families. The results of this conference will form the basis of national advocacy initiatives, fundraising initiatives, cross-sectoral collaborations, and the development of new community programming.
The conference will feature presentations from and incubate new initiatives with some of Canada’s leading advocates and experts in child and youth health, and will highlight results of provocative and innovative child health initiatives. The Sandbox Project will be highlighting what has been accomplished by the sector since the last conference, and will be identifying the challenges and opportunities ahead. Participants will be charged with the task of identifying the next set of strategies to improve children’s health in Canada that leverage resources and foster collaboration. Presentations, discussion panels, networking opportunities and breakout groups will inspire a collective energy to problem solve and to generate solutions that cross sectors, disciplines and fields of expertise.
Participants will leave the conference with a clear understanding of the challenges and opportunities ahead, priorities and next steps for all sectors, and the foundation on which to create new partnerships and collaborations. This conference is just one example of how The Sandbox Project is breaking ground by engaging corporations as active partners with a role in designing, and implementing solutions.
Meeting space is available on January 16th, 2013 at TELUS House. Should you wish to book a meeting, please get in touch with Scott Watson at firstname.lastname@example.org
Click here to see the agenda.
Incubating New Initiatives
This year, we are excited to offer a different approach to engaging conference participants. The Incubating New Initiatives sessions will provide experts from across our core areas of interest (environment, injury prevention, growing healthy bodies, mental health and disability) an opportunity to work together on common issues affecting child and youth health. We are creating spaces where conference participants can move beyond learning and sharing expertise, to becoming active collaborators in the development of action plans to improve health outcomes.
These hands-on working sessions will enable experts from across disciplines to brainstorm imaginative new ways of addressing child and youth health issues. By the end of each session, participants will have produced a comprehensive list of actions, approaches, projects, partnerships and collaborations that will offer innovative solutions to problems affecting child and youth health. These action plans will serve as a strategic framework supporting the work of every researcher, organization, agency, and program working to improve the health and wellbeing of Canadian children and youth.
Concurrent one-hour sessions will be offered twice during the conference, enabling participants to contribute to two different topic areas. Session topics include:
- Increasing the health and safety of young workers – Every year, hundreds of youth are injured or killed in the workplace, many of them within days of starting a new job. Young workers are entering the employment market without an adequate understanding of safety precautions and the physical literacy required to work safely. This incubator session will outline the challenges from both public and private perspectives and explore potential solutions that will keep Canada’s young workers healthy and safe. Participants will design a strategy to protect young workers in Canadian workplaces. This could include (but is not limited to) regulations, policies, programs, awareness campaigns, and knowledge dissemination.
- Preventing and reducing suicide and diabetes among Aboriginal youth – Suicide and diabetes are two of the most urgent health issues affecting Canada’s aboriginal youth. Suicide rates among Inuit youth are among the highest in the world, and are 11 times the national Canadian average. First Nations living on-reserve have over three times the prevalence of diabetes than the general Canadian population. Dr. Michael Jong has been exploring ways to better understand local risk and protective factors when it comes to suicide and other health issues affecting Aboriginal youth. Based on his work in Labrador, Dr. Jong will share some of the challenges, successes, and best-practices he has encountered. Relying on their experience with health research, programming and/or partnerships in Aboriginal communities, participants will explore ways to build on Dr. Jong’s work, and will identify strategies, partnerships and opportunities to reduce rates of suicide and diabetes among Aboriginal youth in Canada.
- Building strong and inclusive communities – Canadian children with disabilities do not have the supports and accommodations needed to be meaningfully engaged in their communities, and are not accessing enough opportunities for social interaction and development. The 2012 Sandbox Conference featured a set of recommendations designed to strengthen community environments and support the social development of children and youth with disabilities. Participants will review and provide feedback on the work that has been done to date, and will explore ways to implement the remaining recommendations. Highlights of the work that has been led by The Sandbox Project partners since the 2012 conference include: developing web-based tools to support access to information, developing inclusive community programs and services, and developing social networking tools to connect families to their community.
Active Living: Promoting sustainability behaviour change - Despite the availability and effectiveness of evidence-based tools and programs to increase healthy living, activity levels among children and youth in Canada remain low, and obesity levels remain high. Only 7% of Canadian children & youth meet the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines.Participants will explore ways that these resources can be used as part of an overall effort to increase sustainable behaviour change. Based on their experience and research with these and other similar health promotion and behavior change efforts, participants will identify common facilitators and barriers to the use of these tools, and explore how partnerships, collaborations and other strategies can be used to broaden their reach and impact.
When & Where
The Sandbox Project
Our vision is to help make Canada the healthiest place on earth for children and youth to grow up. Our ambitious but achievable goal is to make measurable progress against international health indicators within the next five years. In particular, we are focused on improving health outcomes with respect to injury prevention, obesity, mental health, and the environment. This is no small task; however, there is no more important challenge than to improve the health of our children and youth through evidenced-based public policy.