2014 saw the launch of the 1st UK Public Health Film Festival between Friday 27th and Sunday 29th June. The event featured a host of big name screenings including Dallas Buyer Club, Contagion and Wall-E, along with smaller independent films on a wide variety of public health issues.
We were also privileged to have Dr Pam Luna and Gary Black, co-organisers of the American Association of Public Health, come and give free workshops as part of the festival.
Dr Pamela Luna, is a health and education expert and led an engaging session on the importance of physical activity in youth as part of the kids events on the last day of the festival. She is recognized for her leadership in promoting physical activity in youth and lead a team of professionals in California in securing mandatory physical fitness testing and reporting throughout California schools which lead the way for other states to follow. During the ‘Fitness with SPARK’ session, children were actively engaged in learning through movement. Dr Luna said, “it is essential to make it fun, if youth enjoy being active they are inclined to seek it out throughout their lives – a priority goal for public health” . Physical activity is associated with a high quality of life.
Children attending the session participated in age appropriate activity led by a team of professionals. It featured the award winning evidenced-based ” SPARK” developed by researches and practitioners at San Diego State University. Both the parents and children attending learned new ways to promote physical activity and have fun.
Gary Black led a session on film making for novices, which was a good opportunity for the audience to get out their iPhones and iPads and try their hands at making and editing short films.
The festival was featured on the University of Oxford’s Arts Blog. It was supported by the Oxford School of Public Health, The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities, and the British Medical Association. We would also like to acknowledge the kind help given by the Oxford Picturehouse with organising the event.
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