Shape up with Steve

PUBLISHED: 15:19 29 March 2007 | UPDATED: 10:15 31 May 2010

CHILD obesity will be tackled when a new healthy lifestyle programme is launched at Saffron Walden and Great Dunmow s leisure centres. Mind, Exercise, Nutrition and Do It (MEND) will be run by Uttlesford District Council and Leisure Connection to get chil

CHILD obesity will be tackled when a new healthy lifestyle programme is launched at Saffron Walden and Great Dunmow's leisure centres.

Mind, Exercise, Nutrition and Do It (MEND) will be run by Uttlesford District Council and Leisure Connection to get children aged between seven and 13-years-old to shape up.

The course will be offered free thanks to funding of £32,000 from the Children's Fund Essex, and youngsters who need to get fit and find a new healthier lifestyle can sign up for the fun and informative programme to help them achieve it.

Programme leader Steve Prosser said: "The MEND programme is a fun and exciting initiative that we are extremely excited to be involved in.

"Children participating will learn the importance of being physically active and eating a balanced diet whilst making new friends and improving their confidence.

"Offered completely free of charge, each course will run for 10 weeks and consists of two sessions a week, concluding with a supermarket visit to check out food labelling as well as a food tasting session."

The programme has been bought from the MEND Company, who will train leisure centre staff to deliver it.

One of the senior partners of MEND is an advisor to Jamie Oliver's school dinner project.

No date has yet been set for the launch of the programme, but places can be booked and Mr Prosser is hoping the course will prove a success.

"The programme is now on offer at the Lord Butler Fitness and Leisure Centre in Peaslands Road, Saffron Walden and at Great Dunmow Leisure Centre on Parsonage Downs," he said.

"Depending on take up from the Stansted Mountfitchet area, there are plans to run it at the Mountfitchet Romeera Leisure Centre on Forest Hall Road.

"We are aiming to get at least 10 participants and places are available on both courses."

The programme will run on Monday and Wednesday nights in Great Dunmow and on Tuesday evenings and Saturday mornings in Saffron Walden.

Parents interested in getting their child enrolled on these courses should e-mail Steve Prosser at steven.prosser@leisureconnection.co.uk or call him on 01799 581720.

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