Ecological Factors and Strategies for Childhood Obesity Prevention Targeting Vulnerable Children: Using Community-Based Participatory Research

Park Sooyeon, Choo Jina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Purpose: This study aimed to explore ecological factors and strategies for childhood obesity prevention targeting vulnerable children using a community-based participatory research (CBPR) methodology. Methods: The CBPR was conducted by following basic process steps. Participants were 12 community stakeholders such as community child center directors (n=4), vulnerable children's mothers (n=3), community health center officials (n=2), and lay health advisors (n=4); they were purposively sampled from K municipal county in Seoul, South Korea. The qualitative content analysis was performed to explore main themes of the ecological factors and strategies by using data obtained from 5 times of focus group interview. Results: Twelve ecological factors associated with childhood obesity prevention were identified: Intrapersonal factors including emotional overeating; interpersonal factors including permissive parenting style of children's eating behaviors; organizational factors including social workers' less educational opportunities; and community/policy factors including less government financial support. Four ecological strategies for childhood obesity prevention were addressed: Developing obesity prevention programs targeting vulnerable children' lifestyles; promoting parents' active participation in education; building healthy meal service environments through empowering social workers; and building supportive community environment and securing community resources for child obesity prevention. Conclusion: Our findings may be informative in terms of providing a comprehensive understanding of multi-level ecological barriers against vulnerable children' obesity prevention and, moreover, guiding multi-level strategies for preventing childhood obesity targeting children enrolled in community child centers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)256-268
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Korean Academy of Community Health Nursing
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
-This study was supported by the Health Promotion Fund by the Ministry of Health & Welfare (General 13-8) & the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) by the Korea government (No. NRF-2019R1A2C1004116).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020. Korean Academy of Community Health Nursing. All Rights Reserved.


  • Childhood obesity
  • Community-based participatory research
  • Focus groups

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Community and Home Care
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)


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