Health champions from a local pharmacy visited primary school pupils to help them discover the importance of healthy eating.

Type=image;ImageID=15866;ImageClass=left;ImageTitle=Healthy eating session;TitleClass=strong;

Using interactive exercises, staff from Northwood Pharmacy helped Year 1 pupils at Oak Meadow Primary School learn about different food groups, the importance of getting a healthy balance and eating at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

Pupils also took part in a healthy shopping exercise at a virtual supermarket and devised their own food group plates.

The visit formed part of the Healthy Living Pharmacy programme which was launched by the City of Wolverhampton Council, Wolverhampton Local Pharmaceutical Committee and Wolverhampton Clinical Commissioning Group last year.

The quality mark is given to pharmacies which proactively engage with the public to tackle health inequalities and improve wellbeing, both within the pharmacy and by reaching out to businesses, schools and community groups in their local area.

Carol Haycock, a member of the Local Pharmaceutical Committee, said: "As a Healthy Living Pharmacy, we believe that every contact counts, and teaching children to look after themselves and respect their bodies at a young age will help them to go on and live well in the future.

"Children are incredibly good at passing on learning so hopefully they will share what they have learned about healthy eating with their families.

"We hope to build on this in the future and work with other schools and community organisations in the local area."

Oak Meadow Primary School Headteacher Simon Arnold said: "In addition to our continual focus upon developing healthy lifestyles, we plan an annual Health Week which provides us with focused time to look at how we can encourage our children to keep themselves safe and healthy.

"The children have enjoyed visits from a dental therapist, the fire brigade and health champions from Northwood Pharmacy who kindly gave up their time to deliver such meaningful workshops about healthy eating to our Year 1 pupils."

Councillor Lynne Moran, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said: "It was great to see this partnership with Oak Meadow Primary School which enabled the children to identify carbohydrates, fruit and vegetables and protein.

"They know that these foods are healthy and conversely, foods with salt and sugar like chocolate and crisps are best taken in small bites. Such important understanding stands them in good stead for their future health and wellbeing."

The initiative also supports one of the central ambitions set out in the City of Wolverhampton Council's Vision for Public Health 2030 - to work with partners and support them to maximise the impact of everything they do to transform health outcome for the people of Wolverhampton.

Councillor Hazel Malcolm, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "We need to create the right environment for our children to grow up to be fit and healthy, and instilling in them at a young age the importance of healthy eating is a great step on the path to good health and wellbeing."

Caption: At the healthy eating session at Oak Meadow Primary School are pupils Teigan Tedstill, Esme Griffiths, Theo Wilkes, Freya Griffiths and Greg Dun with Councillor Lynne Moran, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, Pharmacy Health Champions Stephany Mills and Nichola Mears, Caroline Haycock from Northwood Pharmacy and Headteacher Simon Arnold.

  • released: Monday 9 July, 2018