For most people who volunteer, it doesn’t take long to realize that you get back much more than you give. No one knows that better than CATCH Healthy Habits
volunteer Doris Felix.
While Doris is new to the program, she’s no stranger to giving her time. “I’ve been volunteering for years because I like it,” she says. “I didn’t know what to expect with OASIS but I have enjoyed this from the beginning.”
Doris was a kinesiology major in college, so health and fitness is really important to her. As a CATCH volunteer, she discovered that she really enjoys teaching the lesson. “I have a loud voice and they respond to me,” she jokes.
The time Doris spends with her CATCH Healthy Habits kids is fulfilling, she says. “The kids are so cute. When we did Lesson 2, they remembered everything we told them from Lesson 1.”
By volunteering with the program, Doris knows she’s contributing to help conquer a national public health issue. “It’s so important, now that obesity is on the rise. There is so much these young children can learn from us if we have the opportunity to teach them.”
Through her time spent at CATCH Healthy Habits sessions in Long Beach, CA, Doris feels she’s giving something to the kids that they can take with them. “Eating healthy is easy and good for them and they have something to take home to their parents,” she says.
Indeed, the kids are learning and remembering, especially about “Whoa, Slow and Go” foods. WHOA foods are those that contain a lot of salt, unhealthy fats, or added sugars—sometimes all three. GO foods contain very little salt, unhealthy fats, or added sugars—sometimes none at all. SLOW foods are in between GO foods and WHOA foods and may include items like 2% plain milk, white bread and rice, and pancakes.
The lesson for Whoa, Slow and Go foods includes identifying foods by those categories. Doris asks, “Is broccoli a ‘whoa’ food or a ‘go’ food?” The kids all shout back, “Go food!” And who ate ‘go’ foods?” Doris asks. A student pipes up with, “I ate apples and yogurt.”
“They are like little sponges,” she says with a smile.