Improving the Health of our Future Generation

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Improving the Health of our Future Generation

As we mark the start of National School Sports Week, Evolve’s mission to improve the health and wellbeing of disadvantaged children has never been more important.

Researchers have reported a sharp increase in childhood obesity during the pandemic, rising by 41% between 2020 and 2021, which could have lifelong health consequences for the children affected.

Whilst obesity figures have since decreased upon children’s return to school and the resumption of their normal activities, they still remain elevated compared to pre-pandemic levels. In addition, children from disadvantaged communities are disproportionately affected, as they are less able to access physical activity opportunities than their peers.

Evolve is leading the way in closing the wellbeing gap between advantaged and disadvantaged children. In this blog, we will highlight how Evolve Health Mentors are supporting disadvantaged children in rebuilding healthy habits post-pandemic and share the progress mentees have already made.

Health Mentoring programmes incorporate practical interventions throughout the entire school day, starting with Wake and Shake to prepare pupils for the day ahead. Lunchtime playground activities are also a fundamental aspect of the programmes, as they allow children to refocus ahead of afternoon lessons. 

In addition, Health Mentors lead after school activities across a variety of different team sports, from football to tennis, to ensure children are meeting the Chief Medical Officers’ physical activity guidelines. This also provides disadvantaged children with the opportunity to experience different sports that they otherwise may not have accessed due to financial restrictions.

In addition to practical interventions, Health Mentors incorporate individual and group mentoring sessions into programmes, to teach children about the importance of their diet and the components of a healthy diet. This provides them with the knowledge to make better nutritional choices and establishes a foundation for healthy eating in the future.

Children’s progress is continually monitored through the mentoring programme using the Wellbeing Compass. After just one term of mentoring, mentees were on average eating less sugary snacks and were better able to describe the benefits of a healthy diet. Furthermore, mentees at a school in London improved their physical activity scores by 10% within the same time frame.

If you would like to learn how our Health Mentors could improve your pupils’ diet and physical activity levels, please contact us at

To learn more about the rise in childhood obesity levels during the pandemic, click the link here.