Our Big Lottery funded project, Fit 4 Fun staged a special celebration event Tuesday October 25th to mark the end of a successful 3 year funding campaign, which has seen them put a smile on the faces of children and their families across Carmarthenshire through staging a variety of fun, healthy living activities.One of 14 projects across Wales funded by the BIG lottery’s Way of Life programme, the aim of Fit 4 Fun has been to raise the awareness of the importance of healthy eating and physical activity amongst children under 12 years of age and their families, improving their attitudes towards healthy living and ultimately increasing their participation in the amount of healthy foods that they eat and the amount of exercise they do.
Over the course of the project, Fit 4 Fun has worked with thousands of Carmarthenshire’s children through the staging 6-8 week activity programmes which have been carried out by professional activity providers within both schools and community group settings.
One school that has benefited from a number of Fit 4 Fun activities is Copperworks Infants School in Llanelli, and Teacher and Healthy School Co-ordinator, Isabelle Scott-James has been really impressed with the service provided by the project, "The involvement of Fit 4 Fun in supporting our school's healthy initiative programme brought a welcome fun-filled addition to the pupils learning opportunities regarding the importance of eating healthily and keeping active!"
An example of the community work that Fit 4 Fun has done is in the Glanymor and Tyshia area of Llanelli, which has resulted in the establishment of a Parent and Child Cooking Club, which meets twice a week. The group is led by local parent Mrs Rebecca Westcott and she believes Fit 4 Fun has had an enormous impact with the area, “The cooking clubs have been extremely popular, running at full capacity each week. They give an excellent opportunity for the parents to play an active role in their child’s learning and have enabled both parents and children to learn and develop their cooking skills. As a result many parents are now moving away from giving their children ‘ready meals’ as they now have the confidence to cook their own nutritious food. The support that Fit 4 Fun has given, has enabled us to get the clubs off the ground and they now run on a self-sustained basis, which means we can continue to make an positive impact on local families for a long time to come.”
CYCA Manager, Mrs Tracy Pike is delighted with the impact that Fit 4 Fun has had throughout the county “The project has been a great success. We really feel that we have been able to make a difference to the way children and their families feel about healthy eating and exercise. The feedback we have received from both parents and teachers has been fantastic.”
The Celebration Event took place on Tuesday October 25th in Carmarthen Leisure Centre and children were given a taste of what the project has delivered over the course of the 3 years, as they had the opportunity to take part in a host of free activities including, Swimming, Water Polo, Snorkelling, Aqua Course, Gymnastics, Trampoline, Street Dance, Circus Skills, Cooking, Climbing, Badminton, Table Tennis, Squash, Martial Arts, Karate, Tatty Bumpkin Yoga, Gym Tots, and Dance Tots.
Fit 4 Fun Project Co-ordinator, Matthew Newbold was pleased with the turnout on the day “It was an excellent day and a really fitting way to celebrate the work which we have done over the last 3 years. Hundreds of children came along and had a chance to take part in the type of activities we have staged and it was another reminder to children and parents why exercise and healthy eating are so important. We also showed that healthy living can be really fun and rewarding.”
The funding officially ends on November 30th and the team are still actively involved with in a number of schools and groups. However, project staff are currently working hard to see if the project can carry on a self sustained basis.
“There has been such a positive response from every activity we have staged in both schools and at various community settings, we felt it was only right that we explore whether we could charge for the service. We are currently in discussion with a number of schools and we are encouraged by the feedback we have received so far. So fingers crossed, this is not the end of Fit 4 Fun, but the beginning of a new chapter.” Said Matthew Newbold
Visit our gallery section to see all the images from the event.