[URBANTH-L] "Designed for Play: How 'Green' School Ground Design Contributes to Childrens Physical Activity"

CUHI cuhi.admin at utoronto.ca
Wed Sep 19 17:34:48 EDT 2007

CUHI Spotlight on Urban Health Seminar Series

Designed for Play: 
How 'Green' School Ground Design Contributes to Children's Physical Activity

Anne Bell, (PhD)
Project Manager of Research, Learning Grounds, Evergreen


The school ground represents an important built environment that provides
children with regular opportunities for active play during the school day.
What research methods are best suited to monitoring and measuring the
relationship between school ground design and children's physical
activity? This presentation reports on the findings of a methodological
study, funded by CUHI, which explored a variety of quantitative and
qualitative methods, including periodic scans of all children playing on the
school ground, direct observations of individual children, accelerometry,
mapping, guided walks and student interviews. Beyond purely methodological
considerations, a selection of the data generated by the various methods
will also be discussed, particularly as they relate to 'green' design

Dr. Anne Bell is a researcher, writer and environmental consultant living in
Toronto, Canada. She holds a Ph.D. and Masters in Environmental Studies from
York University, an M.A. from McGill University, and a B.A. and B.Ed. from
the University of Toronto. She has conducted research for many government
and non-government organizations and is currently the Project Manager of
Research for the Learning Grounds Program at Evergreen.

University of Toronto, University College Building (15 King's College
Room UC177 – 1st Floor, West Wing
October 3, 2007
1:15- 2:45 PM

Free, all are welcome, please RSVP to cuhi.admin at utoronto.ca

Upcoming Seminars/ Workshops:

Thursday November 8, 2007
Izumi Sakamoto, Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto
CUHI 2007 CBR Award of Merit Honourable Mention
Project: “Coming Together: Homeless Women, Housing and Social Support”
Presentation Title: TBA
Location: TBA 

Wednesday December 5, 2007
Laura Simich, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
CUHI 2007 CBR Award of Merit Honourable Mention
Presentation Title: “Sudanese Settlement and Sociocultural Aspects
of Mental Health: Thinking Globally, Acting Locally”

Summary:  The community-based Study of Sudanese Settlement in Ontario
was conducted for Citizenship and Immigration Canada in 2003-2004 to
ascertain Sudanese settlement needs in seven Ontario cities. The study
indicated that family adaptation, economic integration and social cohesion
are the major settlement challenges for Sudanese, and that these have a
deleterious impact on individual and community mental health. In this
presentation, Dr. Simich looks back on success factors and outcomes of
the initial study. She also presents recent findings from an in-depth
follow-up study (2006-2007) conducted in Toronto, Ontario; Calgary, Alberta;
and in the rural community of Brooks, Alberta, to identify underlying issues
and proposed solutions for community mental health. The presentation
reflects on the relationship of the local to the global context and looks
ahead to social support intervention research and planning in Toronto.  

Bio: Laura Simich, Ph.D. is Assistant Professor in the Culture, Community
and Health Studies Program, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto,
and a Scientist in Social Equity and Health at the Centre for Addiction and
Mental Health, Toronto.  She is an anthropologist (Columbia University, New
York) who came to Canada from the U.S. with her family in 1991. Dr. Simich
specializes in qualitative, community-based, health promotion and
policy-oriented research. Her recent studies have focused on sociocultural
determinants of mental health among immigrants and refugees.  Her ongoing
research interests are social support, resilience, family wellbeing and
mental health among Sudanese, Sri Lankan Tamil refugees and non-status
immigrants in Toronto. She helped to develop the popular self-help guide for
mental health promotion in diverse communities, Alone in Canada: 21 Ways to
Make it Better, a Guide for Single Newcomers to Canada, which is available
in 18 languages. 
Location: UC 177

Thursday January 17, 2008
Donald Cole and Kate Bassil, Department of Geography, University of Toronto
CUHI 2004 & 2006 Seed Grant Recipient
Project: “Use of 911 Ambulance Dispatch Data for the Syndromic Surveillance
of Heat- related Illness in Toronto”
Presentation Title: TBA
Location: TBA

Tuesday February 12, 2008
Cyndy Baskin, School of Social Work, Ryerson University 
CUHI 2006 Seed Grant Recipient
Presentation Title: “Which of the Following is NOT an Essential Service o
Roads o Schools o Food Access? Exploring Food Security with Young Aboriginal

Summary: This seminar will present findings from a research project
conducted with young Aboriginal mothers in Toronto using Aboriginal research
methodologies. The project explored issues affecting food security for these
mothers and their children with a focus on community involvement and policy

Bio: Dr. Cyndy Baskin, of the Mi'kmaq Nation, is an Associate Professor in
the School of Social Work and the Centre for Studies in Food Security at
Ryerson University. She worked at several Aboriginal social services
agencies within Toronto before coming to Ryerson in 2001. Cyndy's teaching,
research and writing focus on Aboriginal world views, research
methodologies, decolonization, and the strength, resilience and resistance
of Indigenous peoples globally.

Location: TBA

Wednesday March 19, 2008
June Larkin, Institute for Women’s Studies and Gender Studies & Susan Flynn,
Planned Parenthood
CUHI 2007 CBR Award of Merit Winners
Project: Toronto Teen Survey
Presentation Title: “The Toronto Teen Survey: Improving Sexual Health
Services for Diverse Toronto Youth”
Location: TBA

Thursday April 17, 2008
Gala Arh, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
CUHI 2006 Seed Grant Recipient
Project: “Mapping the Attributes of the Church & Wellesley Neighbourhoods
which Influence Tobacco Use among Lesbian, Bi-Sexual, Transgender People”
Presentation Title: TBA
Location: TBA

Alexis Kane Speer
Centre Coordinator
Centre for Urban Health Initiatives (CUHI)
University College, Room 259
University of Toronto
15 King's College Circle
Toronto, Ontario M5S 3H7
FAX: 416-946-0669

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