Assembly tackling child obesity

With a third of children in Wales overweight or obese*, Heritage Minister, Alun Ffred Jones, is calling on families to join the Assembly Government's Change4Life scheme.

Since launching in March, over 14,000 families have signed up to Change4Life. They receive personalised packs full of simple, fun ideas to help them eat more healthily and be more active. Special packs are being sent out later in July for the start of the school holidays.

Mr Jones said: "This coming week (5 – 11th July) is National Childhood Obesity Week and I am keen for as many families as possible to join us and Change4Life. The scheme helps families eat well, move more and live longer.

"Simple changes to our lifestyle can improve our health, help us to live longer and set a good example to our children. The Welsh Assembly Government launched this campaign to provide practical advice and support to families across Wales about how they can make choices that will have a positive impact on the health of their children. "

Chief Medical Officer, Dr Tony Jewell explained: "We want it to be as easy as possible for people to be as fit and healthy as they can. The amount of people who are overweight in Wales is already too high and this is increasing.

"With Change4Life we are asking families to complete a simple questionnaire about their eating and activity habits, and they then receive a free personalised action plan full of ideas, tips and advice on how to get the whole family doing more physical activity and eating more healthily.

"We are also supporting MEND, a programme for families who have concerns about their children's weight. The fun-filled 10-week programme which runs across Wales teaches youngsters aged 7-13, and their families, about healthy eating and gets them involved in interactive physical activity sessions."

In order to sign up to Change4Life and receive a tailored action plan, parents can call the Change4Life contact centre on 0800 100 900 or complete a form on-line at

Change4Life has two simple objectives:

To get families up and about with the aim of getting children to undertake 5 x 60 minutes of physical activity a week.
For people to be aware of their diet: 'me-sized' meals, having regular meals, counting snacks, swapping sugary food and drinks for ones lower in sugar, cutting back the fat and eating 5 a day.

To find out more about MEND and to see where your local programme is running in Wales, visit