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University of Queensland researchers are developing a digital toolkit for childcare workers, parents and families to help ensure that children under five are provided with nutritious food.

Professor Helen Truby of the UQ School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences said the project received $ 1.2 million from the Australian Department of Health under the Public Health and Chronic Disease Grant Program over a three-year period.

“This grant will allow us to work with educators and early childhood families to jointly create resources to amplify messages about the importance of healthy and nutritious food for the under-five age group,” said Professor Truby.

“A particular focus will be on creating new culturally appropriate resources for non-English speaking families and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children that will be developed in collaboration with community members.

“Through our cooperation we can influence the health development of all children in Australia and give them the best nutritional start in life.”

The first five years of a child’s life are a period of rapid growth and brain development that is heavily influenced by diet.

Nutritious Tools will have a range of resources to aid early childhood and nutrition education that will be available free of charge.

“Resources are specifically designed to fill current gaps and address the tailored needs of these underserved communities,” said Professor Truby (pictured).

“In addition, a free open access short course will be offered to train users on how to use the various tools in their practice and in child nutrition and behavior modification.”

Dr. Jacki Walker and Dr. Clare Dix from the UQ School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences join Professor Truby on the project’s research team.


The University of Queensland