The Brighter Futures, Healthy Families 0-19 service have worked in partnership with Dilkes Academy to develop a universal healthy lifestyle programme for primary school aged children.
Through the programme, children learn about healthy living through a variety of missions earning a point for their class on each day they achieve the mission. As part of this, representatives from education, public health, and NELFT attended the launch of the 'physical activity' mission at Dilkes Academy on Monday 8 July and joined children, parents and school staff in their ‘Mount Everest Expedition’.
(Pictured left to right; Katie Corbett - School Effectiveness, Amanda Burgess – Healthy Families team lead, Kerrie Willis – health improvement practitioner, Lorraine Barnes – Dilkes Academy Pupil Welfare Officer, Dave Henderson – Dilkes Academy Sport Coach, Mr Thompson & Miss Stephens – Dilkes Academy Graduate Sports Coach, Joanne Guerin – NELFT assistant director, children’s services Essex & Kent, Beth Capps – Senior Public Health Programme Manager, Tracey LeMay – health improvement specialist, Healthy Families)
The mission for the summer term is for children to reach the summit in 10 days by completing a number of activities at the start of the school day. ompetition between classes has encouraged participation in:
- Reducing sugar
- Increasing water consumption
- Increasing fruits and vegetables
- Choosing a healthy school meal
- Being more active
(Students at Dilkes Academy taking part in the Mount Everest Expedition Challenge)
The successful pilot at Dilkes Academy means that the programme is being rolled out across Thurrock. Of the event, Tracey LeMay, health improvement specialist, Brighter Futures, Healthy Families service said:
“I am extremely proud of what NELFT and Dilkes Academy have achieved. It was a privilege to witness the laughter from children, families, teachers and special guests, as they took park in activities on the school field. What a great way to start the day!”.
Gill Burns, children's director, also shared her thoughts on the event saying:
"Well done everyone on a great event and start to the Everest Mission for Dilkes. Being able to work with the schools and our commissioner to develop such an innovative programme has been a real inspiration for children and their families”.
For more information about the Brighter Futures, Healthy Families Service visit https://www.nelft.nhs.uk/services-thurrock-brighter-futures-healthy-families