ParticipACTION: Overview and introduction of baseline research on the "new" ParticipACTION
1 Healthy Active Living and Obesity Research Group (HALO), Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute, 401 Smyth Road, Ottawa, ON, K1H 8L1, Canada
2 Canadian Fitness and Lifestyle Research Institute, 201-185 Somerset Street West, Ottawa, Ontario, K2P 0J2, Canada
International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 2009, 6:84 doi:10.1186/1479-5868-6-84Published: 9 December 2009
This paper provides a brief overview of the Canadian physical activity communications and social marketing organization "ParticipACTION"; introduces the "new" ParticipACTION; describes the research process leading to the collection of baseline data on the new ParticipACTION; and outlines the accompanying series of papers in the supplement presenting the detailed baseline data.
Information on ParticipACTION was gathered from close personal involvement with the organization, from interviews and meetings with key leaders of the organization, from published literature and from ParticipACTION archives. In 2001, after nearly 30 years of operation, ParticipACTION ceased operations because of inadequate funding. In February 2007 the organization was officially resurrected and the launch of the first mass media campaign of the "new" ParticipACTION occurred in October 2007. The six-year absence of ParticipACTION, or any equivalent substitute, provided a unique opportunity to examine the impact of a national physical activity social marketing organization on important individual and organizational level indicators of success. A rapid response research team was established in January 2007 to exploit this natural intervention research opportunity.
The research team was successful in obtaining funding through the new Canadian Institutes of Health Research Intervention Research (Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Prevention) Funding Program. Data were collected on individuals and organizations prior to the complete implementation of the first mass media campaign of the new ParticipACTION.
Rapid response research and funding mechanisms facilitated the collection of baseline information on the new ParticipACTION. These data will allow for comprehensive assessments of future initiatives of ParticipACTION.