Free films address obesity epidemic

The Maui County Nutrition & Physical Activity Coalition and the Maui Family YMCA will present the full series of the “Weight of the Nation” films.

The series was developed by HBO and various organizations and foundations in order to raise public awareness about the seriousness of the obesity epidemic, according to a news release. Over a three-year period, HBO traveled nationwide to meet hundreds of Americans who are struggling with – and overcoming – weight issues. HBO also researched the science and economics of obesity and talked to the country’s leading experts on the issue.

The first of the four-part series will be shown Thursday at the Maui Family YMCA, 250 Kanaloa Ave. in Kahului.

All films will be shown at the Maui Family YMCA at 6:30 p.m. Thursdays:

* Thursday: “Consequences” (Excess weight seriously threatens our health – and the health of our nation.)

* April 25: “Choices” (What are the best ways to achieve and maintain a healthy weight?)

* May 30: “Children in Crisis” (Obesity puts our children at risk for a shorter, sicker life.)

* June 13: “Challenges” (What caused the obesity epidemic? What will it take to slow, stop and reverse it?)

Because some of the detailed descriptions of the health consequences of obesity may be considered disturbing, the film being screened this Thursday is not intended to be viewed by young children.

The presenters are offering free child care through the Y’s Child Watch program for the film’s duration. Space is limited.

Reservations for child watch are required and may be made by emailing or by calling 242-9007.

Questions about the films, or reservations to attend these free film screenings may be directed to Sandra McGuinness, coordinator of the Maui County Nutrition & Physical Activity Coalition, by emailing or calling 264-7895.