Obesity is a growing public health concern in Cameroon, with serious consequences for individuals and communities.
Recognising this urgency, the CBC Health Services is at the forefront of the fight against obesity by implementing various initiatives to raise awareness, promote healthy habits, and identify individuals at risk. We have taken proactive steps to address obesity through awareness, education, and screening initiatives. This report highlights our commendable efforts in tackling this critical issue.
Early detection and screening
Know Your Numbers (KYN) Screenings is one of the major activities carried out in our health facilities to fight obesity at an early stage. The importance of early detection and risk assessment has been understood, therefore by measuring weight, waist circumference, and checking for other health indicators, the CBC Health Services proactively identifies individuals at risk of obesity and related complications.
We also conduct KYN screenings in communities, including obesity assessments alongside other health parameters like hypertension, diabetes, waist circumference, and major behavioral risk factors. Early detection of obesity and other NCD risk factors allows for timely interventions and preventive measures. Physical exercise is a tradition during clinic days in our facilities!
Community Engagement and Awareness
We gave several presentations at churches, schools, and other places on the dangers of unhealthy eating habits. The rising awareness about the link between poor diet, obesity, and NCDs, empowers individuals to make informed choices for themselves and their families. The NCD Prevention and Control Program Manager, Mr. Takwe Boniface, talks about unhealthy eating habits amongst other things during such outings. This is a prime example of the CBC Health Services' commitment to community engagement.
Awareness campaigns in schools to address the prevalence of unhealthy eating habits and lack of physical activity among students have also been our focus in recent times. The main focus has been to highlight the risks of junk food, sugary drinks, tobacco use, and sedentary lifestyles to equip young people with the knowledge and motivation they need to adopt healthier behaviors.
Advocacy and Partnerships
The CBC Health Services is a technical partner to the Government of Cameroon in health care delivery. We recently participated in a strategic NCD planning meeting at Ebolowa for 2024 to 2030. Discussions with one of the Subdirectors for Chronic Diseases and NCDs revealed that Cameroon does not have a programme targeting the prevention or control of obesity. The CBC Health Services' proactive efforts in this area position us as pioneers and potential collaborators in future Government initiatives.
Expanding School Programs: Increased resources would enable the CBC Health Services to reach many more schools with awareness campaigns, fostering a generation of health-conscious individuals.
Enhanced Community Screening: With additional support, the organisation would conduct more comprehensive obesity screenings and follow-up community interventions, leading to improved health outcomes.
The CBC Health Services is at the forefront of the fight against obesity in Cameroon. Through community engagement, awareness campaigns, early detection efforts, and advocacy, we significantly impact individual and community health. Continued support and collaboration can further amplify our efforts and contribute to a healthier future for all.
- If the CBC Health Services can partner with other NGOs and healthcare organisations to share resources and expertise, it will go a long way to beat the disease.
- The need for developing and implementing culturally appropriate interventions for obesity prevention and management.
- The need for research to evaluate the effectiveness of existing programs and inform future strategies.
By embracing these recommendations and continuing with this commendable work, the CBC Health Services can play an even greater role in reducing the burden of obesity in Cameroon and promoting a healthier future for all.