Innovation Exchange

MEND (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do it!)

Introduction

Key activities

Benefits and impacts

Learning

Further Information

MEND (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do It!) is East Ayrshire Council’s community, family-based programme for overweight and obese children ages 2-4, 5-7 and 7-13 years and the recently introduced MEND Teens for 13-16 year olds and their families.  It combines all the elements known to be vital in treating and preventing overweight or obesity in children, including family involvement, practical education in nutrition, increasing physical activity and behaviour change.

Theme: Children and Education

Sessions are delivered over a ten week period and place emphasis on practical, fun learning and is designed to deliver sustained improvements in families' diets, fitness levels and overall health. MEND is not a diet - it empowers children and their families to make life changes and to build a foundation for healthy living for life.

 

This multi-component programme provides support in the form of fussy and balanced eating, reducing screen time, increasing active play, positive parenting, including role modelling and encouraging healthy eating habits and routines.

The Play and Early Intervention Team prides itself in its pro-active approach in providing a platform for all MEND graduates, siblings and their families to encompass an active healthy lifestyle. Through our TreMENDous Club it is apparent that this unique club is an innovative tool which provides children, young adults and parents with the skills, confidence and enthusiasm to lead a full and active life.

 

7 MEND programmes are being delivered annually, with 60 participants taking part.  As well as delivering positive outcomes in physiological measurements and social aspects, MEND graduates from the programme in return, have delivered over 1,500 volunteering hours in activities across the authority.

The programme uses an asset based approach with children and their families and combines all the elements known to be vital in treating and preventing overweight and obesity in children, including family involvement, practical education in nutrition, encouraging physical activity and support for behaviour change. MEND is not a diet – it empowers children and their families to make life changes and to build a foundation for healthy living for life.

Contact details:

To find out more about this case study, please contact:

 

Susan Taylor

Head of Children's Health, Care and Justice Service

East Ayrshire Council

01563 576597

Case study added to site: September 2016

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