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Despite having different and unique sets of needs, for much of history children have been treated like small adults. In fact, the world’s first children’s hospital in Paris wasn’t founded until the 1800s, and it was around this time that thinking regarding health care for children seemed to change. 

Today, most nations recognize that taking care of their children is not only an important step in care for individuals and families, but also that the health and well being of society will be impacted for generations to come through healthy children.

History of National Child Health Day

For almost a century, National Child Health Day has been part of the landscape of individuals and organizations in the US who are interested in promoting better health for children. It was in 1929 that President Calvin Coolidge was urged, through the efforts of the American Federation of Labor and the General Federation of Women’s Clubs, to declare this as Child Health Day.

Originally taking place on May 1, more than 30 years later it was changed to be celebrated in October to offer more opportunities for different celebrations and activities.

Although National Child Health Day takes place on one day, obviously the purpose is to showcase the day and inspire individuals, schools, organizations and government agencies to act on behalf of child health on every day throughout the year!

How to Celebrate National Child Health Day

Get on board with National Child Health Day by including some of these ideas and activities:

Host National Child Health Day Events

Medical professionals, schools, hospitals, social work and health care organizations can all get involved with National Health Day through various community events and activities. This might include a community child health fair where booths are set up to represent different healthcare professionals, non-profits, educational organizations and so much more. Perhaps local doctors and dentists will volunteer to offer free health screenings for the event and provide referrals as needed.

Schedule Your Child for a Health Care Checkup

Certainly many different elements of healthy children come into play, including healthy diet and exercise, learning, play, sunshine, good sleep, emotional health and so much more. But one regular thing that all parents can do is make sure their children get to their family doctor or pediatrician for their annual health and wellness checkup. This may include different immunizations as well as evaluation of height, weight, hearing, vision and more. It’s an important part of making sure that a child is developing as best as they can!

Support a Children’s Health Organization

Those who are interested in observing National Child Health Day in a practical way can get involved with one of the many different non-profit organizations or hospitals that promote child health and well-being. For some this might mean signing up as a volunteer to work with children, act as a health care support worker, read to children or some other activity. Others might find that making a donation to support a charity is a good way to make a difference in the lives of children’s health for today and as an investment in the future.

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