Health Ministry to distribute 300,000 bicycles
ANKARA – Anadolu Agency
DHA photoUp to 300,000 bicycles will be distributed this year to children and teenagers in order to encourage regular physical activity, Turkish Health Ministry announced on April 21. The bicycles will also be given to the municipalities in order to encourage them to construct bicycle roads.
“Physical inactivity constitutes serious health risks for not only adults, but also children and teenagers,” read the statement, adding that bicycles help people form healthier life styles and protect the environment.
Results of the Health Ministry’s study titled “Health and Nutrition in Turkey,” conducted in 2010, were also mentioned in the statement; according to its findings, 71.9 percent of the people are not engaged in regular physical activity.
“The United Nations took action due to the fact that noncontagious diseases are increasing every day. According to the U.N.’s action plan, countries were urged to stop the upward trend in obesity and diabetes and decrease the rate of the inactive population by at least 10 percent by 2025. Inactivity is the most important public health problem for modern society,” said the statement.
Stating that physical inactivity may cause 25 percent of all breast and colon cancer cases, 27 percent of all diabetes cases and 30 percent of all ischemic heart disease cases, Health Ministry stressed that the distribution of the bicycles will start on National Sovereignty and Children’s Day on April 23.
The first batch will include up to 65,000 bicycles and will be distributed to children and boarding schools, determined locally in cooperation with the provincial directorates of national education.
The ministry, which completed purchasing 300,000 bicycles it plans to distribute, will continue the bicyclces’ distribution in accordance with the delivery schedule of the bicycle producers.