My role


Flint joins footballers to spur us on

The government chose White Hart Lane, the world famous home of Tottenham Hotspur football club to launch its new awareness campaign to encourage people to get fit and healthy.

'Football and Health' is a manifesto using football to promote partnerships between local health and football organisations to help to promote public health and activity.

Football is already supporting next month's Men's Health Week with former England international Trevor Brooking chairing Hazardous Waist, the opening conference and Sven Goran Eriksson and the team donating a signed shirt to the competion on our sister site malehealth.

Public health minister Caroline Flint, pictured with Eriksson at a previous event, joined the leaders of the FA, the Premier League, the Professional Footballers' Association, the Football Foundation and the English Schools' FA for the "Power of Football" Conference at Tottenham's majestic ground in north London.

Flint said: 'Football is an important part of many peoples lives and with its family friendly policies including smoke free grounds, family enclosures and football in the community work carried out by club players it provides great opportunities to get across key messages about living a healthy, active lives.

'Football, alongside other sports, has been ahead of the field in putting these healthy living messages into practise and recognising its role in influencing the lives of its fans and players. But it is in reaching out to local communities that sport can offer a unique contribution.

The 'Choosing Health' White Paper, published last year, set out Government action to help people live healthier, more active lives. 'Football and Health' is one of a range of actions it promoted to get children involved in making healthier choices about the food they eat and how much exercise they take.

With more than seven million adults and five million children playing football each year and 26 million fans passing through the turnstiles to see professional football matches each week, the footballing authorities, the NHS and Government are determined to harness this mass appeal to help reinforce and promote healthy living.

The guide includes case studies and practical advice to encourage more formal partnerships at a local level between football clubs, community organisations and primary care trusts.

Brian Barwick, Chief Executive of the Football Association, said: 'Football's work with the Department of Health can benefit us both - more people playing football means both a stronger national game, and a fitter, healthier nation. We hope the examples in this guide will be an inspiration for health professionals and football clubs around the country, as there is a lot more we can do together.'

The Department of Health also announced that it will fund nine sport and health roadshows around England. These will prepare the ground for effective partnership between sports clubs, the NHS and local authorities using sport to promote public health.

Page created on May 25th, 2005

Page updated on December 1st, 2009