Northern Obesity Partnership; Choose to Live Better Festival 8th January 8 - 20

The Northern Obesity Partnership is supporting a number of events and activities across the Northern Trust Area during this January fortnight, aimed at supporting people in making healthier choices.

Sabrina Lynn, Senior Health Improvement Specialist with the Northern Trust and Northern Obesity Partnership Co-Ordinator said; “Obesity is one of the greatest health challenges we face as individuals, families and communities but it’s important to focus on the positives in order to encourage and motivate change.

The Northern Obesity Partnership aims to support individuals, families and communities to take positive steps to longer term lifestyle changes”.

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The aim of the Choose to Live Better Festival is to both inform and encourage people start to take those positive steps in making lifestyle changes for themselves and their families and to recognise that small changes, which are easier to manage, can make a big difference to our long term health.

60% of adults in NI are classed as either overweight or obese according to the 15/16 NI Health & Social Wellbeing Survey. According to the same survey, 25% children aged 2-16 are overweight or obese in NI.

Through this fortnight the Northern Obesity Partnership is supporting a range of events and activities to promote physical activity, nutrition and breastfeeding, including:

NHSCT Maternity Services – Baby vests promoting breastfeeding with the slogan “mmm…my mummy’s milk” will be provided to all babies born to breastfeeding mothers during this fortnight. The vests will also be provided to new mums at the local breastfeeding support groups and mums to be attending Parentcraft Breastfeeding Sessions. For more information contact: Sinead Lynch; [email protected] or telephone 028 9083 1408

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Networks Involving Communities In Health Improvement – Three interactive events covering healthy eating, nutrition and physical activity will run across the Northern Trust Area facilitated by Networks Involving Communities in Health Improvement (NICHI) officers. Each event will focus on three main elements: healthy eating, nutrition and physical activity therefore targeting a wide age range. The events will consist of a healthy eating demonstration, healthy recipes, health and well-being information and an element of physical activity. For more information contact: Pamela Davis; [email protected] or telephone 028 9447 8645

NHSCT Supporting Breastfeeding Staff to Return to Work – A pilot will be initiated in January 2018 to support staff returning to work from maternity leave, who are continuing to breastfeed. Working with the Human Resources departments, Breastfeeding Coordinator and Health & Wellbeing team, breastfeeding mothers will be provided with a cool bag to support them to express and store milk during working hours. For more information contact: Sinead Lynch; [email protected] or telephone 028 9083 1408

NHSCT Staff Health & Wellbeing – NHSCT will be offered a free Smoothie Making for Breakfast and Lunch workshop to help boost fruit and veg intake. For more information contact: Geraldine Quinn; [email protected] or telephone 028 2563 5575

NHSCT School Nurse Service - Activity tracker Watches will be provided to 500 Year 8 pupils across the NHSCT area with an emphasis on the promotion of physical activity, at the planned Healthy Child Healthy Future Health Appraisals during January 2018. For more information contact: Clare McKeown; [email protected] or telephone 028 9083 1489

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The Northern Obesity Partnership is a multi-sector and multi-disciplinary group responsible for the local delivery of the regional strategy: Fitter Futures for All - Preventing and Addressing Overweight and Obesity in Northern Ireland 2012 -2022. More information on making small changes with positive impacts can be found at:

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