CREATING healthy habits will be the focus for local kids as a new program prepares to kick off.
As part of a collaboration between Tamworth Family Support Services (TFSS), Hunter New England Health and Tamworth Aboriginal Medical Services (TAMS) the Go4Fun initiative is hoping to help families eat better and feel fitter.
TFSS staff member Rebecca Butler said the program helps kids aged 7-13 years who are above, or at risk of being above a healthy weight learn more about nutrition and fitness.
Ms Butler said what's unique about the free, 10 week program is that it involves the whole family, to make sure everyone as a healthy plate at the dinner table.
"It's about building that relationship within the household and bringing families together," she said.
"They get to work together to look at the benefits of nutrition and physical activity."
The program is designed to cover all aspects and provides both nutrition theory and age-appropriate physical activity.
In charge of the theory, dietitian Ellen Payne said this type of early intervention was crucial in creating healthy and sustainable lifestyles and avoiding chronic disease.
"It's quite difficult to change our habits as we get older," Ms Payne said.
Over the 10 weeks participants will learn how to create healthy meals, but Ms Payne said it was also important to keep things practical.
Families will learn how to "have these foods at home without it costing lots of money, or without it taking hours to cook", she said.
Ms Payne said having this sort of education could help reduce the likelihood of heart disease and type two diabetes, which are "quite big killers" in the adult population.
While the program is centred around health and nutrition TAMS youth worker Trent Taylor said helping kids make friends and have fun was one of the main reasons he got involved.
"Hopefully down the track they can look back and remember, he's my mate now and we met here doing the program," Mr Taylor said.
Kids will get out in the fresh air with games like bean bag races, basketball, touch football, hula hooping and tag.
The sessions start on February 2 at the Coledale Community Centre.
For more information, or to register your interest, call 1800 073 388.
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