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Introduction - Social Innovation
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This report shall review a project a wicked problem and its solution in terms of social innovation shall be highlighted. The wicked problem that shall be discussed in this report is the increasing obesity epidemic among the youth of Australia. Such an issue needs to be addressed otherwise it can result in increased chances of physical and psychological illness among the youths. Thus a social campaign in terms of social innovation shall be conducted to address the issue. The measurements, evaluation, strengths, and weaknesses of social innovation shall be explored. A project logic model shall be used to evaluate the social innovation and based on the outcomes investment-related decisions shall be made.
The wicked problem
The identified wicked problem is the advancing obesity epidemic among the youth of Australia.Obesity or being overweight is defined as excessive or abnormal accumulation of fat that increases the risk of poor health conditions and pushes a person towards the risk of illness. Obesity usually results from sustained energy imbalance that a child or adult consumes via excessive drinking and eating unhealthy and sugar-content beverages, increased amount of time spend in front of the screens, and low amount of physical exercise. Complex environmental, social and biological interaction also influences obesity among youths such as high accessibility of unhealthy foods and low opportunity for outdoor activities and others. Moreover, obese youths are often exposed to bullying that impacts their physiological well-being, self-confidence, and others (Xu et al., 2018). Obesity also results in breathing difficulties, hypertension, and risk of cardiovascular diseases. Thus, this wicked issue needs to be addressed.
Obesity is one of the most visible yet neglected public health issues. Immediate actions are needed to be taken against obesity otherwise it might result in serious health issues. In1995, 18 million youths across the world were considered obese and the percentage gradually increases and by 2000, over 200 million youths became obese (Hardy et al., 2019). Currently, more than 350 million that is 13% of the entire youth in the world are declared obese by the world health organization (World Health Organization, 2020).
However, it has been found that Obesity has becomean epidemic among the youths of Australia. World Health Organization has mentioned that the prevalence of obesity among Australian youth increased slightly and mainly remainedplateaued during the period from 2007 to 2012. Around 8% of youths were obese during this time (Huse et al., 2018). However, the percentage gradually started increasing. In 2017 one out of 4 children was obese that is 24% of the youth. ABS National and Australian Health Survey report indicated that a major change was seen in youth obesity from 2007 to 2017. In the last few years, the percentage has increased and it was reported that 25% of Australian youths are obese in 2020 (World Health Organisation, 2020). Such an incidence can be said to be the obesity epidemic in Austral and it needs immediate care and social innovation to barrier such issues and to protect the health andwell-being of the youths.
The social innovation
The social innovation is about which the report shall discuss is about conducting awareness campaigns in educational institutes to aware the youths of Australia. A group shall be formed along with partnering with local non-profit organizations to conduct the campaigns. A local government shall also be contacted to gather the required findings. A volunteering team shall be developed to organize the campaign and to aware the youths by visit different educational institutes. The team shall be knowledgeable about the epidemic and the negative impact of increasing obesity. They shall discuss the negative impacts of being obese and preventive measures with the youths in different educational institutes. The team shall also overview and measures the weights of the youths in different institutes.
They shall highlight the following obesity mitigation strategies:
- Avoid food with high added sugar, and fat, and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.
- To engulf milk, yogurt, and cheese with reduced fat variety and to eat lean meat, eggs, fish, nuts, tofu, and legumes in adequate quantity (Huse et al., 2018).
- To drink water rather than soft drinks.
- Encouraging cycling or walking to the educational institute.
- harmful impacts of being obese shall be discussed such as the increased chance of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and others.
After 3 months, the team shall again monitor the weight change among the youths in different educational institutes to understand whether or not the campaign was effective to address the obesity epidemic among the youths.
Measurement of SROI using the program logic model
Aim of the program: To reduce the increasing percentage of obesity among youths
Short term impact
Partnerships with different NGOs
Funding over 3 years
The social marketing campaign for students
School-based obesity education events and programs
Policy and regulatory actions
Youths are being aware of obesity and its harmful impacts
Youths participate in the obesity mitigation programs
Better contribution and cooperation from youths
The knowledge of obesity and its harmful impacts are being regulated among youths
Youths have a low interest in fast food and oil-based food products
Lower rates of obesity among the youth population
Greater health condition of youths and improved health
Strict policies allow youths to limit their intake of calories and indulge more in physical; activities that help in improving the health of individuals. Furthermore, collaboration with NGOs also helps in developing strategies and measures that can be circulated among different schools and universities in Australia to spread awareness among individuals. Funding for 3 years helps in gathering resources that help in spreading awareness among youths (Werkhoven et al., 2018). Social marketing campaigns and school-based events and campaigns will allow youths in gathering knowledge about obesity and its harmful effects on physical conditions. The campaigns also allow individuals to engage with one another and gather personal experiences individuals have faced due to obesity. The campaigns result in positive outputs as the events help in minimizing the intake of foods that are high in calories. A decrease in obesity will also help in the effective role of youths in contributing their efforts toward their career development. Short-term impacts included minimizing the obesity rate among youth to a certain extent (Buru et al., 2021). Gathering knowledge of obesity and the factors that result in obesity is circulated among the youths in the country. Raster of obesity will be lowered with the help of the programs and events which are considered to be an intermediate impact. Improving health conditions to a greater extent increases the educational condition among school students. Reducing obesity among youths not only improves the situation of physical activity among youths but also helps in reducing cardiovascular disease in the future.
Intake of a healthy diet is one of the positive outcomes of the program. The campaigns conducted during the program provide in-depth knowledge of obesity among youths (Buru et al., 2020). With in-depth knowledge, youths may intake healthy food products which may help in decreasing the higher intake of calories and improves the physical structure of youths in the country.
Strengths and weakness of the model
Illustrating vast knowledge of obesity among youths is one of the strengths of the model. Numerous knowledge of the negative impacts of obesity allows youths to control their intake of food products that are high in calories and carbohydrates. The model also determines policies that are implemented in different schools and universities. Strict policies in schools and universities are one of the strengths of the model. With strict policies, the intake of food products and frequency of physical activities can be regulated in various schools and universities (Black et al., 2018). The campaigns and events are being conducted through an offline process. Conducting events through an offline process is one of the weaknesses of the model. Due to offline programs, it is difficult to spread awareness among maximum schools and universities. Due to limited access to universities, it is difficult to convey information to a vast volume of students in Australia.
Investment decisions are dependent on the impacts of the programs and events on the youths. After 3 months a team of volunteers will be analyzing and evaluate the impact of the events on the youth in different universities and academic institutions. The positive impacts of the programs on the youths will result in more investment through the assistance of the government and different private institutions. Investment duration will also be increased if there is a positive impact of the programs on the youths. In case of negative impacts, the team will be focusing on different ways of spreading awareness and limiting the use of food products that results in an increased percentage of obesity.
Banning several food products will allow for controlling obesity in case of negative impacts of the programs and events. Investing in food products with low calories is one of the approaches to investment decisions that can be proposed by the government of the country. Investment decisions may include weekly sessions and activities for the youths in different academic institutes for conveying the positive impacts of controlling obesity among youths (Laitinen et al., 2020). Weekly sessions may require high investment and involvement of third-party experts who have the capability in enhancing youths towards decreasing obesity.
Investing in monthly physical checkups of the youths in determining the level of obesity among the individuals is one of the investment decisions that can be implemented in the country.
The ongoing epidemic of obesity has affected 13% of youths on a global basis. It can be concluded that the epidemic has also affected the activities of individuals in Australia. From 2007 to 2012, the epidemic prevailed in the population of youths in Australia. The prevalence of the disease among individuals in Australia concludes that the epidemic is a serious concern among the youths in the country. The country needs to implement strict strategies and policies for mitigating the epidemic among the youth. It has been found that several events and campaigns help in conveying and spreading awareness among individuals that helps in resulting better outputs and outcomes. The program logic model is a framework that has been used to measure SROI. From the model, it has been found that there are various ways through which obesity can be mitigated but strong and effective cooperation is expected from the youths of different academic institutions in the country. The finding of the reports also depicts that a volunteer team has been implemented to analyze and measure the impact of the model on the youths of the country.
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Buru, K., Emeto, T. I., Malau-Aduli, A. E., &Malau-Aduli, B. S. (2021). Australian School Stakeholders’ Perceived Strategies for Preventing Adolescent Obesity. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(17), 9387.https://doi.org/10.3390/ ijerph18179387
Buru, K., Emeto, T. I., Malau-Aduli, A. E., &Malau-Aduli, B. S. (2020, November). The efficacy of school-based interventions in preventing adolescent obesity in Australia. In Healthcare (Vol. 8, No. 4, p. 514). MDPI.doi:10.3390/healthcare8040514
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Laitinen, T. T., Saner, C., Nuotio, J., Sabin, M. A., Fraser, B. J., Harcourt, B., ... & Magnussen, C. G. (2020). Lower grip strength in youth with obesity identifies those with increased cardiometabolic risk. Obesity Research & Clinical Practice, 14(3), 286-289.https://doi.org/10.1016/j.orcp.2020.04.004
Werkhoven, T., Cotton, W., & Dudley, D. (2018). Australian tertiary students’ attitudes towards youth obesity in educational institutions. European Physical Education Review, 24(2), 181-193. https://doi.org/10.1177/1356336X16675774
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Xu, J., Hardy, L. L., Guo, C. Z., & Garnett, S. P. (2018). The trends and prevalence of obesity and morbid obesity among Australian school?aged children, 1985–2014. Journal of paediatrics and child health, 54(8), 907-912.https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jpc.13922