Operation: DEFEAT SODATRON in Africa with CrossFit Kids


To CrossFit Leadership,

On July 6th, 2017 the Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology Commission published a comprehensive examination of diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa.  Some of the Commission's main findings:

"---- As economies in sub-Saharan Africa transition from lower- to higher-income, diabetes' prevalence in some countries has reached almost 22% in the adult population and as high as 30% in men and women aged 55-65 years, spurred in part by growing and aging populations, changes in lifestyle and eating habits, urbanization, and changing work practices.

---- Currently, only half of those with diabetes are diagnosed, and of those, only 1 in 10 are receiving treatment.

---- After decades of focusing on infectious diseases such as HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria, health systems are largely unprepared for dealing with the growing diabetes burden."


As CrossFit is well aware, soda and pharmaceutical companies have been using their money and power to misdirect global diabetes prevention strategies.  CrossFit's investigative journalists have uncovered top international health policy leaders who have been taking CocaCola money.  Insulin maker Novo Nordisk has been aggressively marketing their global campaign to address diabetes, titled "Cities Changing Diabetes."   The campaign cleverly steers health policy strategy away from sugar and sugary drink reduction and towards exercise.  Youth in Africa will be hearing a message that they must exercise to prevent obesity and diabetes.  Their increased exercise will stimulate a thirst for more soda.  More soda = more diabetes.  More diabetes = more insulin sales.  We have seen this playbook before with domestic obesity/diabetes prevention campaigns, "Exercise is Medicine" and "Lets Move."

In October 2017, we piloted our Operation: DEFEAT SODATRON campaign in Kenya.  In collaboration with the nonprofit, Global Health Disrupted, we delivered the truth about SODA to the youth of Africa.  Health educators utilized the DEFEAT SODATRON branding to engage youth in a curriculum that focused on ....

2 Key Principles:

1) Explaining the health risks of soda consumption.

2) Inciting the children to rise up in defense of their communities as wealthy soda corporations aggressively target them with a drink known to increase disease. 

Here are some screenshots from the Instagram posts of the Kenyan health educators during our pilot campaign.


Health educators used art materials from the DEFEAT SODATRON digital toolkit to inspire rebellion.  The DEFEAT SODATRON coloring page was a favorite. 



Our desire is to expand Operation: DEFEAT SODATRON in Africa.  Crossfit's nutritional philosophy and firm stance against corruption in health policy makes Crossfit an appealing partner.  Over the last few years we have experimented with delivering Operation: DEFEAT SODATRON in conjunction with CrossFit Kids in our California schools.  CrossFit Kids instructor Amanda Douglas has been leading this effort ...



Avid CrossFitters, Drew and Derek Riker have been documenting our collaborative effort with film and photography.  Here is a clip of our efforts in California.

This past fall our CrossFit Kids team leader, Amanda Douglas, spent some time traveling in Kenya and was shocked to see how CocaCola's aggressive marketing had inundated the culture.  Coke was everywhere.  Upon her return to the States, Amanda reached out to us with desire to return to Kenya as a part of our DEFEAT SODATRON crew to teach CrossFit Kids and to inform youth on the truth about soda so they have the knowledge to choose health over a path to chronic disease.  Here is a video she recorded with the Riker Brothers upon her return...



We are reaching out to CrossFit to request funding  to expand our reach in Africa.  Our goal is to bring CrossFit Kids and the DEFEAT SODATRON message to more school children in Nairobi and Eldoret, Kenya.  Our CrossFit team of Amanda Douglas and Riker Brothers Photography are eager and willing to travel to Africa in October 2018 to join our global health education team.

Our longterm goal is to expand our chronic disease prevention model that teaches fitness while simultaneously inoculating youth against the predatory advertising pizazz and health policy corruption of BIG SODA.  By combining CrossFit's immense global popularity and expansive media reach with our deep and trusted connections in the world of global health education and NCD prevention, a synergistic international partnership seems inevitable.  Greg Glassman has a deep appreciation for the corporate and political corruption that will obstruct needed diabetes prevention education from reaching the masses.  The youth of the developing world are counting on us.  With CrossFit's help we can maximize our reach and prevent, the preventable. 

We have included a budget that outlines the cost of adding our CrossFit team.  Our hope is that CrossFit would cover these expenses.  We plan to unleash a barrage of social media and PR highlighting our work in Africa and would be happy to highlight CrossFit's involvement.  

Thanks for your consideration.  


Kevin Strong, MD and Founder of Dunk the Junk


Amanda Douglas and the Riker Brothers have submitted the above budget for our Africa 2018 mission.  In addition, we are seeking $2000 for one week of the Riker Brothers to include photo and video documentation and $1000 for Amanda Douglas for one week of CrossFit Kids education and corresponding social media PR.  

TOTAL FUNDS requested...  $7,926