Specialist dietitian for schools and early years
Families for Life engagement worker
Families for Life project officer
Families for life is a healthy lifestyle programme to support families with children aged 2 – 11 years to be active and have a healthy lifestyle. The programme supports parents to gain the skills and knowledge they need to help their children (and wider family) live active, healthy lives. This programme is funded by Public Health and therefore is free to Islington schools and settings.
Families for Life provides a great opportunity to extend work with parents, focussing on supporting families to ‘feel good and live well’.
Families for Life programmes
The available programmes include:
- Families for Life Primary (5 – 11 years). This is a 4-week programme for children and their parent/carer
- Families for Life Parent only primary (5 – 11 years). This is a 4-week programme for parents only
- Families for Life Family Kitchen primary (5 – 11 years). This is a 6-week programme for children and their parent/carer
- Families for Life Family Kitchen Early Years (2 – 5 years). This is a 6-week programme for children and their parent/carer
- Families for Life Small Steps (1 – 4 years). This is a 5-week programme for children and their parent/carer
Delivery options for a Families for Life programmes
Run the programme in-house with 2 staff members (these staff need to have been trained or attend Families for Life training). Direct funding for schools is available for this option
Run the programme with one member of staff from school supported by one of our Family Kitchen tutor (school staff need to have been trained or attend Families for Life training).
For central training visit the training channel on IslingtonCS.
The sessions are carefully planned to be engaging as well as fun to support families healthy lifestyles and include cooking and eating tasty meals together, learning about healthy eating and playing active games.
Pre and post programme questionnaires are filled out by parents before and after the programme in order to measure the children's progress around eating habits. All information is kept anonymous and confidential. This helps the parent to reflect on the changes achieved during the programme. The anonymous results are used to feedback to Public Health who funds the programme.
Please find the link to the questionnaires and instructions for completion in the How do I apply and how do families complete a questionnaire? section below.
Schools, early years settings and community groups can get involved by:
- Deciding on the progamme that best fits the needs of the families
- Targeting 6 – 8 families to take part
- Having one or two members staff who could deliver the programme and attend Families for Life training if applicable
- Involve Families for Life champions to support the programme
- Locating a venue to hold the programme if needed
- Having adequate facilities and cooking equipment to deliver the programme
- Completing and returning a Families for Life application
The Families for Life brochure has further details and a checklist on what you need to run a programme with your school or group in terms of staffing, training, resources, and facilities.
To apply to run one of the programmes in your setting, please complete the relevant application form to be found in the How to apply and how do families complete a questionnaire? section below.
The Families for Life team supports schools, early years settings and community groups and are available to talk through your needs to identify the best programme to meet your requirements and answer any queries you have. We are also able to train school staff in the identification, support and referral of children and families where there is a concern about weight.
For more information see the school guidance on identifying, supporting and referring families where there is a concern about fussy eating habits and weight.
To apply to run one of the programmes in your setting, please complete the relevant application forms from 'how do I apply?'
Copies of the Families for Life flyers to give out to your families to advertise programmes are available, the back of the leaflet also includes information about physical activity for children and young people aged 2 to 11.
Download promotional Families for Life flyer or request printed copies to share with families to attend programmes at other settings.
Download the adaptable promotional Families for Life flyer and include the contact details for your programme yourself.
To promote the programme to families if you are not running a programme yourself, please use this flyer to share with families. If you would like printed copies, please email us.
To promote your programme to families, include the details on this flyer before sharing with families.
The Families for Life team can help you to promote the programme by:
- A member of the Families for life team can run a taster session at your setting
- A Families for Life community champion can hold a stall at your setting and talk to parents
If you would like to run a Families for Life programme, please download and complete the relevant application form and email it to the Families for Life team
Early Years Settings
We ask parents to complete a questionnaire before and after they have attended a Families for Life programme to see the positive changes to their child's eating behaviours.
It is important that every question is answered correctly in order for the pre and post questionnaires to be matched together when the programme finishes to show the parent the improvements of the children’s eating habits during the sessions and for professionals to gauge the success of the programme and the families progress.
Anonymous matched questionnaires are sent to be analysed periodically to find out statistical data, this is used to show evidence of the success and usefulness of the programmes and supports further programmes being carried out.
We also encourage comments at the end of the post-programme questionnaire as these are very helpful for us too!
Please explain this to the families and check that the forms are filled out correctly and in their entirety before handing them in or submitting them.
The links are to a version on Survs that can be copied into an email and sent to the family before the start of the programme and at the end. Please follow the instructions as above as it is very important the questionnaires are filled out correctly and completely while encouraging families to add feedback on their experience of the course.
Post programme questionnaire
You can also click on the links to be taken straight to the questionnaires on Survs - however, you can not distribute the questionnaire this way.
Contact: Marjon Willers / Natasha Miller
Tel: 020 7527 5866 / 2304