The primary focus of Women Warriors is to increase physical activity and reduce sedentary time for children, youth and adults as per the Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines and the Canadian Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines. Targets of 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week for adults and 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity per day for children and youth, with reduction of screen time to less than 2 hours per day and a goal to minimize sedentariness, effective tools for diabetes prevention. Throughout the 8 Weeks to Healthy Living program participants, women and their children are exposed to many different types of exercise and activity in order to educate and encourage them. There is also a facilitated self-awareness component using materials developed from the CANdeck Wellness Program. These self-awareness tools are intended to guide participants to better identify their own health issues and guide them to seek support from professionals as needed. Another primary focus of the program is to integrate nutrition education and dietary change with goals of increasing fruit and vegetable and fiber intake, reducing sugar intake and optimizing protein intake while taking into consideration the socioeconomic and food security realities of the participants (food and meal suggestions will be based on availability and affordability).
Shelley Wiart is Métis from the Northwest Territories and a member of the North Slave Metis Alliance. She is a mother to three beautiful girls Kayla, Aubrey, and Harper. Her family has an intergenerational history of type II diabetes. She was an obese child, adolescent, and young adult and had the potential to continue her family history of type II diabetes, instead she choose to lead a healthy, active lifestyle and be a role model for her three girls. Her mission is to help women reclaim their health and self-esteem through an active lifestyle, and holistic health approach. Her focus is on prevention through physical activity, raising awareness of the type II diabetes epidemic among Canadians, and educating people on how lifestyle, nutrition and genetics contribute to inter-generational incidences. She is passionate about decreasing the inter-generational cycle of type II diabetes in families
Dr. Sonja Wicklum
Dr. Sonja Wicklum is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine of the University of Calgary. Dr. Wicklum practiced rural family medicine in Ronan, Mt (Flathead Indian Reservation) and rural Ontario (1994 – 2010). She also practiced obesity medicine at The Ottawa Hospital (2006-2012) and has worked with off-reserve Aboriginal groups in the Maritime Provinces using a participatory approach to developing wellness programming (30, 31). She has extensive experience in rural family medicine, preventive health, nutrition education, and obesity management. She recently joined the faculty at the University of Calgary as a Major Clinical Academic in the Department of Family Medicine. The format of an educational tool, the CANdeck (CAN = Canadian Aboriginal Nutrition), which was developed in conjunction with a group of Maritime off-reserve Aboriginal groups will be adapted for the Lloydminster region and components of the CANdeck Wellness Program will be added to the Women Warriors program.