Kansas City, MO – Students from a dozen Kansas City schools are taking more responsibility for their health. That's following a citywide teen health conference. KCUR's Elana Gordon reports.
Area health officials, concerned with rising obesity and STD rates among young adults, organized the first citywide teen health summit this week. Students from a dozen schools in Kansas City attended the two day event, which included workshops ranging from nutrition to automobile safety. Ursula Copeland with the Kansas City Health Department says organizations typically meet with students at their individual schools and only focus on one health issue at a time.
Copeland: This is the first time we've ever been able to bring together a variety of children from a variety of schools and give them this kind of information and tools to empower them to take it back into their schools.
Angelique Mcrae came out for the summit and says she's learned a lot, especially about what smoking can do to someone's lungs. But she says she's not sure how effective she'll be at educating her peers.
Mcrae: My friends are stubborn. I'll try, but if they don't listen, that's on them.
Organizers say follow-up trainings with students are scheduled throughout the year, and that they plan to make the health summit an annual event.
Funding for health care coverage on KCUR has been provided by the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City.
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