Healthy Marketing with Parents’ Help.

Healthy and Active Before 5 and First 5 Contra Costa are working on a 3 year social marketing campaign to reduce the consumption of sugary sweetened beverages and promote drinking tap water.

There is no single cause of childhood obesity. How do we choose where to put our resources and social marketing efforts? We asked Contra Costa parents to help us choose between…

  • Increasing Physical Activity
  • Extending the Length of Breastfeeding
  • Reducing Consumption of Sugary Sweetened Beverages

We conducted 3 regional parent focus groups this summer in order to focus our media campaign.  We asked English and Spanish speaking parents of young children to talk to us about their families’ habits and how we can support them in their efforts towards raising healthy children. Here’s what they told us…

We asked “How do you like to get your news?” …34% said TV!


What can be done to support parents in increasing physical activity?

  • Tips and ideas on how to be physically active with children
  • Scholarships for programs and sports
  • Activity and facility fees based on income
  • Cleaning up parks and neighborhoods
  • Creating parent groups so that children can play together

How can we encourage and support families to breastfeed longer?

  • Provide classes to teach the benefits of breastfeeding and how to do it
  • Support and provide accommodations at the workplace
  • Include education and support for fathers and other family members
  • Have on call lactation consultants who can come for regular home visits

Reasons participants gave for children consuming sugary drinks include..

  • Sugary drinks are cheaper and more affordable than drinks with less sugar
  • Children like the taste
  • Sugary drinks are convenient and take less time to prepare than healthier drinks
  • Children drink what their parents drink
  • Lack of knowledge about the effects of sugary drinks
  • Overabundance of advertising

We are sharing our focus group findings with our community partners. You may download the reports and use them in your own program planning.

First 5_Focus Group Findings Summary (pdf 2.2 MB) 3 pages overview.


First 5 and HAB5_Round 1 Focus Group Report pdf (369 KB) Includes parent responses and demographic profile of participating parents.

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