A special presentation event has been held at Shibden Park in Halifax for the Calderdale Community Health Champions. The event was to celebrate their achievements as the three year project came to an end.
Community Health Champions are volunteers aged 16 and over from North Halifax and Park Wards, who draw on their life experiences and aspirations to encourage other people in their local area to eat healthier, work towards achieving better mental health and to become more active.
Champions were presented with achievement certificates, personal portfolios and special awards for their effort, time and commitment in supporting their peers to improve health and wellbeing by promoting positive health messages, and delivering local activities to improve mental health, eating habits and physical activity levels.
Calderdale Community Health Champions are part of the Altogether Better Network, which last year won the Prime Ministers Big Society award and was a finalist in the Big Lottery awards for Best Health project. The work is supported by the Trust’s Calderdale health improvement service, which works to improve the health and wellbeing of local people.
Community Health Champions are a valued asset within the health improvement service where they have become and will continue to be part of the team supporting objectives aimed at reducing in-equalities in health. At the same time the champions have been instrumental in building knowledge and awareness of health issues within their communities and advocating self-care and independence. Several Health Champions have achieved the Health Trainer qualification which they have been able to utilise to further support their community.
Health Champions were presented their awards by Paul Butcher, Deputy Director of Public Health, and Denise Donnelly, Head of the Calderdale Health Improvement Service. The awards were followed by a whole range of activities including an outdoor Zumba session, with guests and onlookers invited to join in.
The health improvement service has secured funding for another year to support the Health Champions and build on a sustainable approach so they can continue in their role once funding does comes to an end. The team are also currently exploring possible partnerships, building local networks and developing opportunities for Health Champions to share their knowledge and experience. A further 20 Community Health Champions are in the process of being recruited for this year, which will build on the current network of Health Champions currently in place.
Read more about Altogether Better project and their recent award success.