University of Louisville

Poster Title

Meade Activity Center: Process Evaluation for Increasing Physical Activity Opportunities for Rural, Low-income Children

Institution

University of Louisville

Abstract

Rural residency is linked to health inequity because of a lack of access to healthcare services and physicians. Disease prevention is crucial since rural areas are considered medically underserved. The Meade Activity Center (“The MAC”) in Brandenburg, Kentucky mobilized its community members to improve public health by creating physical activity programming for all children in Meade County, regardless of their socioeconomic status (SES). The purpose of this process evaluation was to determine if there were differences in physical activity participation among children with different SES backgrounds. The MAC offers a variety of after-school, weekend, and summer physical activity programs for children in Meade County. A sliding fee scale ensures that any child who wishes to participate in programming has access, regardless of SES. Children who were previously or currently enrolled in MAC programming (N = 766, ages 5-18 years) since the MAC’s inception in 2011 were invited to participate in the survey study. Low SES children were less active than not-low SES children. There was not a statistically significant difference between SES and children’s perception of access to MAC programs. The ultimate goal of MAC is to create physical activity opportunities for children who would not have otherwise been able to engage in physical activity due to fees or transportation barriers. The low response rate of the survey (N = 50, 5.5%) is discussed from the perspective of the rural participants’ and parents’/guardians’ limited experience with the familiarity of informed consent protocols and survey research.

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Meade Activity Center: Process Evaluation for Increasing Physical Activity Opportunities for Rural, Low-income Children

Rural residency is linked to health inequity because of a lack of access to healthcare services and physicians. Disease prevention is crucial since rural areas are considered medically underserved. The Meade Activity Center (“The MAC”) in Brandenburg, Kentucky mobilized its community members to improve public health by creating physical activity programming for all children in Meade County, regardless of their socioeconomic status (SES). The purpose of this process evaluation was to determine if there were differences in physical activity participation among children with different SES backgrounds. The MAC offers a variety of after-school, weekend, and summer physical activity programs for children in Meade County. A sliding fee scale ensures that any child who wishes to participate in programming has access, regardless of SES. Children who were previously or currently enrolled in MAC programming (N = 766, ages 5-18 years) since the MAC’s inception in 2011 were invited to participate in the survey study. Low SES children were less active than not-low SES children. There was not a statistically significant difference between SES and children’s perception of access to MAC programs. The ultimate goal of MAC is to create physical activity opportunities for children who would not have otherwise been able to engage in physical activity due to fees or transportation barriers. The low response rate of the survey (N = 50, 5.5%) is discussed from the perspective of the rural participants’ and parents’/guardians’ limited experience with the familiarity of informed consent protocols and survey research.