Health Sciences

Schools of Allied Health and Exercise Science Charity ‘That Sugar Film’ Fundraiser Night

Students and staff from ACU’s Schools of Allied Health and Exercise Science held a successful Charity Film Fundraiser Night, screening ‘That Sugar Film’, on May 21 at Cinema Nova in Carlton, Melbourne.

‘That Sugar Film’ is more than just one man’s expedition to discover the bitter truth about sugar. The entertaining and informative journey that Damon Gameau embarks on to document and experiment with the effects of a high sugar diet on a healthy body, highlights some of the issues that plague the food industry.

The screening was followed by an insightful Q&A session hosted by public health nutritionist, Associate Professor Shawn Somerset, Deputy Head of the School of Allied Health in Brisbane and Mr Anthony Whitty, Lecturer from the School of Exercise Science in Melbourne.

Proceeds from the night are going towards St Kilda Baptist Church’s ‘Community Kitchen’ and the Box Hill Baptist Church’s ‘Food at the Barn’ programs, where four Bachelor of Applied Public Health students are currently completing their Community Engagement fieldwork. Both of these community-run food programs provide a weekly meal for members of their community to share together.

Madeline Tatham is the vice-president of the ACU Public Health Students Society (PHSS) and is currently studying a Bachelor of Applied Public Health.

“Stephanie Verga (PHSS President) and I decided to form the PHSS to raise awareness about public health around ACU, as it was and still is a very new course to the university, and to develop a group where both current and new public health students can support one another,” she says.

“The PHSS chose to contribute to the charity film fundraiser event as after our success in raising funds for Nepal earthquake victims, we were both inspired and empowered to help out two more local and very deserving charities. I am overwhelmed with appreciation for all of the support we received on the night, and also very proud to be a part of such an amazing cohort at ACU.”

The event was supported by staff members Dr Bianca Share, from the School of Exercise Science, and Penelope Smith, Lecturer in Public Health, School of Allied Health.

“Penny and I bring with us different backgrounds in health and together we wanted to provide our respective students with the opportunity to inform the community about health, exercise and lifestyle issues,” says Bianca.

“’That Sugar Film’ provided the perfect platform for a community engagement activity, raising health awareness and providing an opportunity to raise funds and awareness about the great work of local community-kitchen programs. We praise the students for their efforts in what was a great movie night!”

Attended by over 100 people, the fundraising event may have forever changed the way the audience think about ‘healthy’ food. Most importantly, it provided our undergraduate Applied Public Health and Exercise Science students with an insight into the urgent need for improving population health, as well as the complex issues around the science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting health by improving social and political systems.