Four to six year-olds in the Middle East now have access to a “virtual pet” encouraging them to drink more water, with the launch of the Tummyfish book and App – home to a fish appearing to swim in a child’s belly which gets happier and vigorous with more water consumption, and sad and slow when it needs water to regain full energy.
Nestlé Middle East and Motivate publishing have joined forces for this launch, as part of “More Water” behavior from United for Healthier Kids movement created in 2015 to help parents nurture healthier generations. The celebration was held with families and children at the Wild Wadi Water Park in Dubai.
International studies show that 30% of obese preschoolers and 40% of obese school children become obese adults1, making childhood obesity reduction all the more vital.
United for Healthier Kids capitalizes on the generosity of the Arab culture to offer MORE, calling for the promotion of MORE Movement; MORE Water; MORE Fruits & Vegetables; and MORE Managed Portions – behaviors scientifically proven to positively impact quality of life throughout life if adopted at an early age.
The GEMS Wellington School in Dubai has come onboard as the first to actively engage its 4-6 year-old pupils, their parents and teachers with the book and App in the current academic year, encouraged by a pilot test in one classroom prior to the launch.
“The Tummyfish initiative is based on scientifically-proven behavioral change principles, and powered by creativity to make it a fun social tool,” said Patricia El Chammas, United for Healthier Kids Manager at Nestlé Middle East. “It uses messaging interventions to help parents act in ways that encourage their children to adopt healthy behaviors, and gently nudges them and their kids towards actions that are in their best interest.”
We spoke to Patricia El Chammas who talks to us more about Tummyfish below: