Heartly Lives Torfaen

School children in Torfaen

There are several areas in Torfaen where cardiovascular health is amongst the worst in Wales.

Working together with Torfaen County Borough CouncilAneurin Bevan Health Board and Public Health Wales, we have invested £1.5 million into the Hearty Lives Torfaen programme.

Our aim

To build a healthier Torfaen by helping people of all ages to manage their weight and improve their long-term heart health.

  • Mind, Exercise, Nutrition, Do it! (MEND). MEND programmes tackle childhood obesity and are aimed at children aged 2-4 or 7-13. They are free and family orientated with an emphasis on fun, fitness, healthy eating and behaviour change towards achieving a healthier lifestyle
  • Activity in schools including Heart Start, Jump Rope for Heart, Active Club and Big Food Challenge
  • Working with and alongside GP surgeries to help patients make the best use of available obesity and overweight services
  • A 12-week group workshop programme incorporating healthy eating advice, nutrition/food labelling, behaviour change and lifestyle.

Success so far

Chris Jones from Cwmbran (who weighed 25 stone in November 2010) enrolled on the 12-week programme in order to try and improve his health, after being motivated to lose weight by his family's history of heart problems. He said his eating habits have changed since he began the scheme: "I'm just eating a lot more healthily."

The programme is excellent. It's nice to see that there are people taking the time to help us.

Hearty Lives Torfaen participant

Cody Gudotti from Blaenavon has been taking part in the MEND 2-4 programme with her two young children. With the help of a community dietician she's been getting advice on how to encourage her children to eat more fruit and vegetables. Cody says: "I didn't really have a clue about planning a menu, or shopping on a budget. Before it was mainly biscuits, or toast with jam - just crisps and junk basically. Now we've got a lot of fresh foods I'm making things from scratch - and it's helping a lot."

More info

This programme as it is will start to wind down between summer 2013 and March 2014.

The positive outcomes of this project will mean that many aspects of the programme will be  used to inform best practice across the whole Anuerin Bevan Health Board.

The final evaluation will be available from September 2014.

For more information about Hearty Lives Torfaen please contact Area Development Manager Joanne Oliver on [email protected].