New courses are starting in Norfolk to get kids more active and eating healthily...
Three new and improved MEND courses start in Norfolk next month, designed to encourage and support children and their families to adopt a healthier lifestyle.
MEND (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do-it) is a free service for seven to 13-year-olds which is funded by NHS Norfolk, and delivered by Football in the Community.
The new courses are at:
The Park High School, Kings Lynn, starting Monday 4 October, from 3.45pm to 5.45pm.
Cromer Junior School, starting Wednesday 6 October, from 3.45pm to 5.45pm.
Hethersett Junior School, starting Thursday 7 October 2010, from 3.45pm to 5.45pm.
Each session consists of an hour covering nutrition followed by an hour of fun-based exercise. A parent or guardian must attend with the child, and courses must be pre-booked.
Toby Nickerson, MEND Co-ordinator at Football in the Community, said: "Children and their families are able to learn about exercise and nutrition which in turn helps to build their confidence and self-esteem.
"The MEND programme is designed to aid changes that help make an incredible difference to children’s and their families' lives. It’s great to see the children grow in confidence throughout the ten weeks of the course."
MEND is the UK’s largest healthy lifestyle programme for children and their parents or carers. It aims to support children and families who would like to attend a more specialised weight management programme.
Toby said: "This free programme has a family-centred approach and is a great way of getting everybody eating healthier and being more active together.
"We can’t do this without the support of parents. They have found the sessions a great way of spending time with their children, learning new games and ways that all the family can become healthier in general."
Hannah Critten, NHS Norfolk's Healthy Weight, Healthy Lives Co-ordinator said: "MEND is an enjoyable way for children to get more active, learn about eating well and build confidence in order to support positive behaviour change. It also gives them the opportunity to have fun with their families too.
"Research has shown that attending a MEND programme is an excellent way to help reduce a child's weight and improve their cardiovascular health. In addition, MEND is known to improve a child's psychological wellbeing, body image and self-esteem.
"NHS Norfolk is pleased to be working with Football In The Community to expand this valuable initiative across Norfolk, giving more children and families encouragement towards a healthier lifestyle."
For information about healthy eating projects and those designed to get you more active, call the NHS Norfolk Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) on 0800 587 4132.