What We Can Do For You

Each of our programmes is underpinned by a whole setting approach. We foster leadership around food and give teachers, early years practioners, NHS staff, carers and cooks the confidence to support and inspire those in their care to eat well.

Our flagship schools programme has demonstrated independently evaluated impacts on health and wellbeing, education, sustainability and inequalities across schools.

Our approach is further supported by the Food for Life Catering Mark scheme, which provides an independent endorsement that food providers are taking steps to improve the food they serve.

Our work is made possible by a diverse range of funders and commissioners, including local public health teams, Clinical Commissioning Groups, NHS trusts, caterers, academy chains, nursery groups and other education providers as well as charitable trusts and major donors.

Our dedicated Development Managers can work closely with you to develop a bespoke programme that best supports your priorities.

Schools

We can provide Award support packages, training workshops and resources for local authorities, academy chains and others to commission on behalf of schools.

Our Local Programme Managers give face to face support to adopt a whole setting approach and create a positive food culture. A menu of training courses has been developed to give staff the confidence and capacity to offer practical cooking, food growing and develop farm links. Training supports the curriculum and helps promote knowledge of healthy eating amongst children, parents and the community.

Other courses are designed to support cooks and lunchtime supervisors. Comprehensive Food for Life schools  resource packs are also available.

Find out more about our schools programme here.

Early Years

The Food for Life Early Years programme includes Award support packages, training workshops and resources for local authorities, early years chains and others to commission on behalf of early years settings.

A comprehensive Food for Life early years ring binder resource is available, which has been developed in association with our National Partners alongside one to one support from a Local Programme Manager.

A menu of training workshops is available that is relevant to nurseries, Children's Centers and childminders. These support early years practitioners to engage parents around breastfeeding support and complimentary feeding; meet the Voluntary Guidelines for Food and Drink in early years settings and use age-appropriate cooking, growing and farm link activities to support all areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage.

Find out more about our early years programme here.

Hospitals

The importance of good nutrition to health, recovery and rehabilitation is recognised within the NHS Standard Contract and the NHS Five Year Forward View calls for better support for hospital staff and visitors to eat well.

We offer a series of packages for NHS Trusts which support the delivery of key national policy initiatives including the mandatory ‘Healthy food for NHS staff, visitor and patients’ CQUIN and the development of a food and drink strategy.

Our Food for Life Hospital Leaders Circle offers a solution for Trusts who want to be industry leaders in the area of health promotion and food experience – for patients, staff, visitors and the wider community.

Find out more about our work with hospitals here.

Better Care

Food for Life Better Care works with care settings, hospitals and in the community to tackle malnutrition and loneliness among older people through good food provision and creating opportunities for communal dining.

Food for Life Better Care offers support to care settings by:

  • Helping them to achieve the Food for Life Catering Mark standards for food quality and nutrition.
  • Improving the mealtime experience.
  • Harnessing the therapeutic value of cooking and food growing.
  • Working in local partnerships, including with schools, to tackle malnutrition and loneliness in the community.
  • Supporting domiciliary care workers to acquire basic food shopping and cooking skills.

Creating Healthy Places

The Soil Association and Sustrans have created an offer for local authorities and their local partners to support the development of a whole system approach to food and active living.

With increased pressure on diminishing resources, local authorities need to utilise all the levers at their disposal to improve public health outcomes, while delivering multiple co-benefits. Creating healthy places supports local authorities to take a systemic, strategic, upstream approach to preventing obesity in a locality, showing that by working across service areas and combining effort with other local delivery partners (including NHS Trusts, CCGs and Local Enterprise Partnerships) local authorities can support populations to maintain a healthy weight while concurrently supporting local businesses and livelihoods, tackling social inequalities, and helping people to live longer, more productive and more independent lives. In a climate of budget-cuts and austerity, there is a clear economic rationale for adopting a whole system approach.

We offer a half-day workshop, tailored to local circumstances and aimed at key senior officers, elected members and local partners, accompanied by a manual which includes examples of practice from across the country and editable support materials to help local authorities review their local approach.

The workshop is delivered by a professional facilitator alongside subject matter experts from the Soil Association and Sustrans, and includes a lively mix of presentations, facilitated discussions and group exercises designed to enable local authorities to:

  • review local approach and progress
  • clarify the policy drivers that may help progress the agenda locally
  • identify areas for action
  • identify key local influencers and explore how to gain their support

A taster of the Creating Healthy Places manual can be viewed here

Find out more about Creating Healthy Places here.



Commission Our Work

Creating healthy places - how we work

The Food for Life approach works at population-level with settings and communities, taking a whole system approach to make it easy, normal and enjoyable to eat well. 

Click on the image below for a handy graphic showing how and where we work.

Food for Life healthy places map

Case Study: Birkbees Nursery Group

The Birkbees Nursery Group is a collection of four nurseries in Huddersfield. The nurseries range from having 32 places to 85 in one setting and cater for a diverse group of children from many different backgrounds. The Birkbees Nursery Group was one of two nurseries who were the first to achieve the national FFL Early Years Award after participating in the pilot programme, supported by Kirklees Council. 

Click on the document below to find out more about their Food for Life journey.

Birkbees Nursery Group Case Study