Hip-hop health, a 'party with a purpose'
By Stephanie Smith CNN | 9/29/2013, 12:35 p.m.
"We found that caloric purchases declined by about 25%," Williams said. "So they were buying more healthy items as a result of the intervention."
The lingering question for this intervention -- and for the Hip Hop Public Health program more generally -- is how to sustain this change.
After reaching tens of thousands of children in New York, Hip Hop Public Health got a shout-out -- and a request to collaborate -- from the Partnership for a Healthier America, whose ambassador is first lady Michelle Obama.
What evolved from that partnership is an album, releasing Monday, called "Songs for a Healthier America."
The album moves the songs beyond hip-hop into other genres (some of the artists contributing to the album include Ashanti, Travis Barker and Matisyahu) and will be distributed, along with a curriculum, to schools nationwide.
Williams is convinced the model that began in New York, with a neurologist and a few rappers, could make a powerful impact in schools across the country.
"This really teaches us how impressionable kids are and how we have an opportunity to shape their behaviors at a young age," he said.
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