FAN Health Promotion & Public Education

Public education plays a key role in helping to raise awareness of public health issues. Through public education and health promotion, we are helping to influence healthy lifestyle choices—combating childhood obesity by providing families with information to make informed decisions and sustain healthy lifestyle behaviors.

FAN has developed three evidence-based wellness curricula that incorporate the healthy lifestyle messages. The curricula span the lifetime with fiveSMART (Pregnancy, Parents, Infants), 5-4-3-2-1 Go! Jr. (2 – 5 years) and Healthy Food, Healthy You, Healthy Planet (5 to 18 years). The curricula can easily be integrated into current programming and FAN staff are available to assist with planning.


fiveSMART provides guidance for three different phases of early childhood (prenatal, 0-12 months and 1-3 years) in the following areas:

Meals and Snacks
Role modeling & responsiveness
Things to avoid

fiveSMART is especially useful for early childhood health providers, who represent an important source of information for families of young children, including:

  • Hospitals/Community Clinics
  • Home Visitors
  • Childcare Providers
  • Parent Engagement
  • Breastfeeding Peer Counselors
  • Community Health Workers

The fiveSMART message and its supporting collateral are available for use by our partners, either alone or integrated into existing programs.

5-4-3-2-1 Go!

Developed in 2004 and refreshed in 2018, 5-4-3-2-1 Go! has reached millions of individuals in Chicago and beyond. 5-4-3-2-1 Go! is focused on children and families and recommends daily goals for food and physical activity behaviors:

5 servings of fruits and vegetables
4 servings of water
3 servings of low-fat dairy
2 or less hours of recreational screen time
1 or more hours of physical activity

The 5-4-3-2-1 Go! message and its supporting collateral are available for our partners to use, either alone or integrated into their existing programs.

Capacity Building

Our Food, Activity and Nutrition Initiative staff also lead training sessions for both private and public sector organizations to build the capacity for health promotion in key settings such as schools, clinics, and among community health workers. We have also teamed with other health organizations such as the Chicago Department of Public Health to launch a variety of public education campaigns that suggest community- and city-wide improvements that could lead to healthier behavior. FAN’s guidebook, “A Standardized Approach to Supporting the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Model in Chicago Schools” assists organizations interested in supporting Healthy CPS and the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Model.

Access the Guidebook

Type 2 Diabetes Management Support

FAN staff works with endocrinologists, nutrition educators and community health workers from to develop, implement and evaluate a comprehensive family-oriented diabetes management and healthy lifestyle program. This program educates families about their child’s diabetes diagnosis and the medical components of the condition, provide them with recommendations for disease management and healthy living and support them as they implement those recommendations.