Obesity Advocacy Targets Forum 2019
Why was the Obesity Advocacy Targets Forum 2019 organised?
Obesity is a key priority advocacy area for PHAIWA. In 2008, PHAIWA facilitated a consensus-led workshop with key experts and stakeholders from across sectors in WA to develop obesity advocacy targets. PHAIWA has also produced a number of resources, reports and research related to obesity prevention work.
In 2019, PHAIWA decided to organise another consensus-led workshop to review and update the advocacy targets for obesity prevention in WA. As the West Australian landscape has seen a number of important policy reports, plans and documents being developed, the timing for the development of updated advocacy targets was good.
The ultimate goal of this second workshop was to guide and inform any consistent obesity-prevention policy and advocacy work in WA across sectors and levels of government, non-government and the community.
What process did PHAIWA use to organise the OAT 2019 workshop?
PHAIWA looked at the breadth of obesity prevention work currently being developed and delivered in WA. PHAIWA then carefully selected five evidence based themes for OATS 2019 to avoid duplication of advocacy work being led by other agencies in WA and ensure relevance to the work currently being undertaken by PHAIWA.
In no particular order, the themes selected were:
- Improving nutrition for Western Australian children
- Improving nutrition for Aboriginal People, particularly in regional and remote communities in Western Australia
- Promoting fruit and vegetable consumption for all Western Australians
- Removing fast food sponsorship from sport in Western Australia
- Improving food labelling and food literacy for all Western Australians.
PHAIWA invited five well-respected key notes to facilitate the discussions related to each theme. The key notes received a briefing document on their role and on the workshop process. They were also briefed through meetings with the organising team.
PHAIWA also identified five expert advocates as scribes to support the facilitators in their role and to ensure the discussions led to the development of advocacy targets. The scribes were provided with a briefing document and their role was clarified over a meeting.
PHAIWA invited experts working in obesity prevention in Western Australia across all sectors and levels of government, non-government, community organisations and universities to participate in this workshop.
The delegates had to choose their preferred themes for the workshop and were then allocated to two discussion groups. The groups were created in a way to ensure a variety of organisations were represented in each group.
Before the workshop, the delegates were provided with a Snapshot of the evidence, a document containing evidence related to their allocated themes in the WA context. This document was meant to be a starting point for discussions. The delegates were also provided with a briefing document including a description of their role on the day as well as criteria to guide the development of advocacy targets.
What happened on the day?
On the day of the workshop, each key note introduced their allocated theme over a five minutes presentation. The group was then invited to join the facilitated discussion for their first allocated theme. This first round of discussion lasted 2 hours.
In the afternoon, the delegates participated in the second round of facilitated discussion for their second theme. For this round, only 1.30 hours were allocated as the facilitators and delegates were expected to be more comfortable with the process. The facilitators were invited to initiate a fresh start with their second group.
In order to ensure the creation targets for both rounds, the groups were advised 20 minutes before the end of the discussion they needed to wrap up and write down their targets.
To ensure that the targets were focused on advocacy rather than program delivery or research, advocacy triggers were reinforced in each group of discussion.
After the discussions, the whole group was reunited and each of the facilitators presented the advocacy targets that were created in their groups and commented on them.
What happened after the workshop?
After the workshop, the PHAIWA team prepared a draft of the advocacy targets created for the five themes. This draft was sent to the delegates to revise and comment in order to prepare a final version of the advocacy targets that would be a true reflection of their work.
Following this final review process, PHAIWA launched WA’s obesity advocacy targets on their website. The delegates as well as anyone working in obesity prevention are encouraged to use these obesity advocacy targets as they see appropriate in their own work.
PHAIWA will promote the advocacy targets as the consensus developed goals for WA obesity sector. As for all other delegates, PHAIWA will assess which advocacy targets are most relevant and appropriate and will use some selected advocacy targets as a guide for their own work in obesity prevention.