William Eichler 26 September 2018

Whitehall asks councils for ‘trailblazing’ ideas to fight childhood obesity

The Government is asking local authorities to apply to its ‘trailblazer’ programme for tackling childhood obesity.

All councils will be able to apply to the programme and set out their proposals for reducing childhood obesity. Up to 12 will be supported to develop practical plans, and next year five authorities will be selected for the three-year ‘trailblazer programme’.

The five selected councils will be given expert advice to help realise their plans, as well as £100,000 per year in funding to support this.

Announced at the Local Government Association’s obesity conference by public health minister Steve Brine, the programme will provide Whitehall with ideas that will shape national policy.

‘We know that when it comes to improving the health of local communities, local leaders are the real experts,’ said Mr Brine.

‘We are looking for innovation, ambition and passion to tackle childhood obesity, particularly in deprived areas, where children are more than twice as likely to be an unhealthy weight.

‘Our trailblazer programme presents a real opportunity to bring your ideas to life with the help of dedicated support and guidance.

‘Your proposals will not only improve the health of children in your own communities but across the country by helping us to shape future policy on childhood obesity.

‘Brilliant, innovative projects are already taking place across the country, but now is the time to share your views on what the barriers are and how we can go forward to tackle this issue together.’

This is the second part of the Government’s childhood obesity plan to halve childhood obesity by 2030. Currently, one in three children leaves primary school overweight or obese.

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