University Hospital Sharjah partners with Health Promotion Dept and Sharjah Health Authority for “Sharjah 1st Challenge” Ramadan campaign

university of sharjahSharjah, UAE, 6th June 2016 – University Hospital Sharjah has announced today that it will be an official partner of the upcoming “Sharjah 1st Challenge” – this year’s title for the annual health and fitness campaign organised by the Health Promotion Department, in association with Sharjah Health Authority.

The annual health initiative is in line with directives from HH Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the UAE Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, to promote healthy lifestyles for citizens and residents in the emirate.

To give it its full title, “Hal Helal Al Sehha 3: Sharjah 1st Challenge” is the third edition of an annual Ramadan programme that aims to increase health awareness and physical activity among Sharjah’s citizens and residents, during the Holy Month. Participants are further encouraged to set a goal of losing between one and two kilos of excess weight, over this period.

The annual campaign, which started in 2014, encourages people to follow a healthy, low fat, low calorie diet and to take up regular exercise. The community-based initiative also promotes healthy food alternatives to eat and highlights public places that can be used for exercising, during Ramadan.

“Part of the many observances Muslims must heed, during the Holy Month of Ramadan, is self-restraint. This ties in perfectly with the attributes needed to live a healthy lifestyle. To this end, the Sharjah 1st Challenge invites people to combine the spiritual and physical commitment, inspired by Ramadan, to shed excess weight over the festive period,” said HE Abdulla Ali Al Mayhan, Chairman of the Board at UHS.

Eman Rashid Saif, Director of the Health Promotion Department at the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, said that the initiative, developed via a partnership with the leading healthcare provider in the emirate, will serve as a starting point to advance the progress of healthcare, and help to encourage a positive change in people’s lifestyles. “This is exactly what the Health Promotion Department is looking for”, she added.

A key advantage to signing up for the Sharjah 1st Challenge is that participants will gain access to a totally free, weight-loss, dietary and exercise programme. That is in addition to being part of a community-based health initiative, backed by the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, the Sharjah Health Authority, and the leading referral hospital for Sharjah and the Northern Emirates, UHS.

Participation in the event is open to adults aged 20 and over; however, entrants must have no debilitating or chronic conditions that prevent them from taking part, on health grounds.

Organisers are keen to stress that the responsibility is on the participant to declare any pre-existing conditions they may have when registering and to consult a doctor beforehand, if they have any concerns.

While the event is all about encouraging people to lose excess weight, organisers have stipulated that this should be done in a healthy way. Participants losing more than one kilo per week will be disqualified. In addition, people regarded as already at a healthy weight will not be allowed to enter.

The event programme will run from 7 June – 1 July 2016. Registration booths will be set up at the main reception, University Hospital Sharjah, from 7–13 June (excluding weekends), with a UHS health professional on hand to provide advice to all participants. The support booths will be reopened from 28 June –1 July to check the entrants’ progress and for any additional advice and support.

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