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nutrition and Physical Activity Branch

Children and Youth

The Children and Youth initiatives under the California Department of Public Health’s Nutrition and Physical Activity Branch (NPAB) represent a compilation of statewide public health initiatives whose efforts are aimed at improving the nutrition and physical activity levels of children and youth from low-income families.


  • 4,000 schools in California qualify for SNAP-Ed funded nutrition education and obesity prevention programs.
  • Close to one-third of California’s children are obese or overweight.
  • Research supports the idea that healthy kids make better learners.

PowerPlay! and School/Afterschool Support

The Power Play! initiative uses activities and messaging in environments where children live, learn and play. Low-resource sites can use its school and afterschool models to provide nutrition education lessons and physical activity energizers, cafeteria-based promotions and youth engagement projects.

New PowerPlay! 4th Grade Workbook (PDF, 1.8MB)

​Youth Engagement Initiative

The Youth Engagement Initiative is a public health initiative that works with youth ages 12–18 in low-resource areas. Youth leaders have been successful in showing stakeholders, community leaders, teachers, parents and policy makers that youth should be a key part of the discussions and solutions development regarding the health and well-being of their communities.

  • Inspiring Youth as Partners (PDF)
    • This document provides an overview for anyone interested in learning more about youth-led processes, youth-adult partnership and/or the impacts of YPAR on youth, adults and communities.
  • Inspiring Youth, Growing Change (PDF, 3.6MB)
    • This report documents successes and challenges resulting from the local YPAR projects.​
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