News Release

Solomon Islands Children Keep Their Eyes on the Ball for Better Health

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints donated soccer balls, basketballs, volleyballs, netballs, bibs and other equipment to local schools this week to encourage children to lead active lives and establish patterns for exercise.

The donated equipment is part of the Church’s effort to help South Pacific Island governments, schools, families and individuals decrease the incidence of diabetes in the region.

“Diabetes, as a non-communicable disease—which includes cardiovascular disease, cancer and chronic respiratory diseases—is a leading cause of premature deaths among Pacific islanders,” according to Hans Sorensen, welfare manager for the Church in the South Pacific.

“The ‘antidotes’ to diabetes are well known: Eat better, exercise more, manage stress.”

The Church is a year into a 10-year plan to support diabetes prevention in all the island nations of the South Pacific.

“We are pleased to support the students and staff of local schools with this donation of sporting equipment which will enable the children to engage in more sports and sports leagues,” said Theresa Nish who along with her husband David Nish are welfare services missionaries for the Church from South Africa living in Honiara.

“We want to help the school children develop a lifelong passion to stay fit and active, and not suffer diabetes or its complications, like blindness, kidney or heart disease, strokes or amputations.”

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