Michelle Obama wants to make tackling childhood obesity her main focus as First Lady. She kicked off her campaign this morning at the Oval Office, joining President Barack Obama as he signed a memorandum establishing an "obesity plan of action."
The First Lady also celebrated her campaign at the Town Hall Education, Arts & Recreation Campus (THEARC), a 110,000 square-foot education arts & recreation center in Washington, DC. Leta Lindley, who grabbed her first LPGA Tour win at the 2008 Corning Classic, joined the First Lady at the THEARC this morning. Lindley, a mother of two, is an advocate for research to find a cure for Prader-Willi Syndrome, a complex birth defect that can lead to excessive eating and life-threatening obesity.
Childhood obesity has skyrocketed since 1980, and one in three children in the United States are now overweight. Michelle Obama's Childhood Obesity Initiative will focus on improving the food provided in schools across the country, and on giving children more opportunities for rigorous physical activity. The First Lady will be the crux in encouraging parents and public, nonprofit, and private sectors to support the work of the federal government in improving the health of American children.
"Obesity has been recognized as a problem for decades," said President Obama, after signing the memorandum. "But efforts to address this crisis to date have been insufficient."*