Slough invests in the long term health of its residents

Published: 25 June 2018

The council’s public health team has partnered with Active Movement to deliver a programme across all Slough primary schools that aims to educate children, staff and parents of the benefits of reducing sedentary behaviour.

This ambitious initiative comes as a direct result of the success of the Slough Wellbeing Board’s #BeRealistic campaign, which encourages small positive changes in lifestyle, to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.

The council is currently recruiting local schools to the initiative ahead of an official launch in the new school year.

Sedentary behaviour is one of the precursors to obesity and poses a number of risk factors to health, including cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.

Councillor Natasa Pantelic, cabinet member for health and social care, said: “More than a third of children in England are overweight or obese by the time they finish primary school and in Slough 41.5% of year six students are overweight or obese.

“Childhood obesity is a serious health concern, both in our borough and across the country. We’re being proactive on this issue, starting in our schools, to educate children, staff and parents on the importance and benefits of adopting, and maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle.”

Dr Mike Loosemore MBE, co-founder of Active Movement, added: “The work already undertaken by Active Movement in Slough across some children centres, nurseries, primary and secondary schools has shown the value of the programme in strengthening community ties.

“We are delighted to have the opportunity to extend the impact of the programme across almost every primary school in Slough over the coming 12 months.”

Castleview Primary School on Woodstock Avenue has already integrated the Active Movement programme and reported excellent results.

Clare Beynon, headteacher at Castleview Primary School, said: “Active Movement has shifted the mind set of our staff and parents. It is amazing how making such small and simple changes alters habits and makes children, and adults, more active and ultimately healthier individuals. It is so simple and anyone can do it!”

The public health team is continuing their successful work with Solutions4Health on the ‘Let’s Get Going’ programme, which provides a 12 week targeted service to children and families from a variety of schools, to support positive lifestyle changes. The service focuses on healthy eating and physical activity and aims to drive forward positive, lasting change.

Maxine Reader, the mother of a family who attended a Let’s Get Going programme, said: “As a family we have started to make food from scratch, making smoothies and cooking more with the children. Turning off screens more and thinking about ways to be more active, we have recently taken up badminton as a family.”

For more information on either of these services, please email sloughpublichealth@slough.gov.uk