Department of Health West Midlands by 0wX83Ug



                                Department of Health West Midlands

                                            Obesity Programme

          Examples of Good Practice/Case Study – Template for Submission

                           Nicola Day
Job Title:-                Community Food Co-ordinator

Organisation:-             Staffordshire County Council


Contact Tel No:-           01785 277850

Initiative/Activity Title
Nurturing Health Award Scheme (Early Years)

Brief Summary of the Project (no more than 100 words)

The Nurturing Health early year award scheme is a novel pan-county, multi agency
partnership award, which sets high quality standards for food and drink provision, the
mealtime environment, physical activity and oral health for 0-5 year olds in private,
voluntary and children centre nurseries.

The scheme has been specifically developed to support a seamless healthy lifestyle
transition between nursery and school environments, through promotion of a varied and
balanced diet, appropriate amounts, intensities and types of physical activity and health
related learning activities and practices.

Family involvement is essential to the award (e.g. menu sharing) and parents are
supporting it. By focusing on child and family learning and engagement, the award
actively promotes sustainable lifestyle changes.

Aims & Objectives (approx 100 words)
The Nurturing Health Award consists of four tiers (bronze, silver, gold and platinum) and
aims to improve standards and recognise higher quality provision on the early year’s
sector. The award scheme is based on best practice, uses learning from two existing
schemes in Staffordshire and aims to address local health problems and organisational
targets such as childhood obesity.

Where Does the Initiative/Activity Take Place
The scheme is available to private, voluntary and children centres nurseries providing
full day care and food on site. Nurseries must have achieved at least ‘broad compliance’
and satisfactory ratings in their most recent food safety and ofsted inspections
respectively to apply for the award.
Who is the Target Audience/Group

Nurseries, families, workforce development- to create seamless transition to school

Which Organisations/Partners are Involved?
The partnership includes Staffordshire County Council, South Staffs PCT, NHS North
Staffordshire, Stafford Borough Council, South Staffordshire District Council, East
Staffordshire Borough Council (BC), Tamworth BC, Newcastle BC, Staffordshire
Moorlands District Council (DC), Lichfield DC, and Cannock Chase DC.

The award partnership group are involved in award development, and overseeing
partnership grant applications, award promotion, implementation and endorsement.

Outcomes and Benefits
What Has Been Achieved?
(Please attach copies of evaluation reports if available)

Achievements from October 08-September 09
    Funding successfully secured from the Tamworth Spearhead area LSP to deliver
      the pilot project.
    Following successful consultation process the award pilot ran between
      September 08-march 09
    A target of 6 nurseries (including 1 CC) applied for the award before April 09
    The award pilot in the 6 nurseries has provided a direct impact on approximately
      325 children and their families and 100 staff.
    The first pilot nursery has recently been accredited with the award
    Parents have been supportive of the award noting improvements in their
      children’s health and well-being and have become actively involved in providing
      feedback on menus.
    Nursery staff have been enthusiastic and positive about the award and have
      found it has given them more ownership in the workplace and improve their
      knowledge and understanding of healthy lifestyle behaviours.
    Nursery managers are using the award to demonstrate good practice to parents
      and Ofsted.
    Validation tools have been built into the award scheme to ensure that the
      nutritional guidance enables nurseries to meet Caroline Walker Trust nutritional
    A post has been made permanent on the County Council health development
      team to support longer term management of the scheme.

Nursery managers note significant changes as a result of the award

    1. cutting back on the number of convenience sauces they use (which are normally
       high in salt) and trying to make sauces from fresh
    2. providing a wider variety of different foods for the children to try
    3. ensuring all main meals include key food groups
    4. planning physical activity sessions in more detail
    5. making plans to start a small vegetable plot in the nursery garden
    6. increasing the amount of baking and food preparation the children take part in


“our children now sit at the dinner table discussing their likes and dislikes”

“Improved partnership working with parents from sharing recipe and menu planning

“An improved menu that we can feel 100% confident in”

Parent Quotes

“I have been impressed with the changes the nursery has made to the menu. My son
particularly tells me what he has had for his dinner. I’ve had some recipes so I can try
his favourite ones at home”

“Striving to achieve the Nurturing Health Award will only enhance and improve our
children’s health and wellbeing”

Maybe include sustainability

What did you do?
There are currently no enforced standards for food provision in early years settings and
although some are following the Caroline Walker Trust guidelines they receive no formal
recognition for this. There is also evidence to suggest eating habits are most easily
shaped in early life, making early years settings a major influence on this.

As a result of this a partnership was formed (see partners) in early 2008 to oversee the
awards scheme. Two award schemes that were being promoted individually in the
county were evaluated, updated and extended within the new ‘nurturing health’ award.
A four tier award system was developed (bronze, silver, gold, and platinum). The award
involved award application, an initial assessment visit, assessment feedback and
support, award specific training and then a final award assessment upon award
completion. Following a successful consultation process the award pilot was delivered
in the spearhead area of Tamworth. Six nurseries applied for inclusion in the award
pilot. Award training involved general healthy lifestyle training delivered to key childcare
staff, managers and cooks and menu planning and special diets training delivered to
managers and cooks. Evaluation took place throughout the pilot phase and award
status is valid for 2 years.

Learning Points and Sustainability: How You Can Do It
Support will continue to be provided beyond the award pilot phase in Tamworth to
facilitate other nurseries in the pilot to complete the award.

All organisations involved in the award partnership have been consulted on their
potential to support country-wide implementation of the award with some very positive
results. Moves are now taking place to streamline the award assessment process to
support much wider adoption of the scheme throughout the county.

 As some districts have identified a lack of available resources to asses and provide
support to achieve the award therefore, self assessment procedures and tighter quality
assurance measure are being discussed and will be piloted imminently. Sustainability of
the award is supported through workforce development; of year’s staff and partners
involved in award delivery. Family engagement is also central to the sustainability. The
award partnership group is also in charge of grant applications, award promotion and

award development, implementation and endorsement.

Date Initiative/Activity Began
December 07- partnership formed
October 08-Sept 09- consultation and development
Sept 09-March 09- pilot
March 09-Now- evaluation and sustainability

Finish Date (where applicable)

For Further Information Please Contact (if different to above)

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