This year the WHO celebrated its 70th birthday and as part of the celebrations, a major health promotion activity, Walk The Talk: the Health for All Challenge, which was free and open to all ages and abilities, took place on the eve of the 71st World Health Assembly in Geneva (May 20th, 2018). Haile Gebrselassie, the multiple Olympic and World Champion long distance runner and world record holder, participated in a range of activities, including taking part in the official opening with Dr Tedros. Representatives from HRIDAY and the Healthy India Alliance participated in the Geneva Walk The Talk. Parallel events to support the #WalkTheTalk Movement took place across the globe. 

In India, HRIDAY, a member organisation of the Healthy India Alliance spearheaded the #YouthWalkTheTalk event in partnership with St. Mary's School, Dwarka and Evergreen Secondary School, Vasundhara Enclave, in Delhi on Sunday May 20th and Monday May 21st, 2018 - respectively. 

Senior officials from the WHO Regional Office for the South-East Asia Region and the WHO Country Office for India were present to motivate the walkers and endorse the significance of prioritising concerted action to address NCDs, in India and the South-East Asia Region. 

Alongside Walk the Talk, students also endorsed NCD Alliance’s global #enoughNCDs campaign (www.enoughncds.com). The Healthy India Alliance, along with other CSOs and People Living With NCDs (PLWNCDs) participated enthusiastically and discussed how CSOs from the health and development sectors must engage synergistically. 

This is essential to augment action on NCD prevention and health promotion in the country, such that the priorities of PLWNCDs garner attention and are engaged in decision-making processes. 

Youth pledged to become change agents and to act on ensuring that action on NCDs are prioritised at all levels and across sectors in the country. They acknowledged that NCD policy action that will be helpful to protect them from NCDs include: 

  • Eliminating exposure to unhealthy food and beverage advertisements and marketing;
  • Implementing comprehensive alcohol control policy in the country;
  • Promoting physical activity for children and adolescents in schools as well in daily living
  • Adopting smart fiscal policies to make unhealthy products unaffordable and;
  • Improving access for healthy food items.

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