LOCAL people are being encouraged to take part in a survey around children’s healthy living, as childhood obesity rates continue to rise across Greater Manchester.
The latest figures suggest that 39 per cent of children living in the 10 boroughs – including Tameside and Oldham – are overweight or obese by the time they get to Year Six (aged 10 or 11) and 22 per cent by reception (aged four or five).
NHS Greater Manchester has commissioned the survey called ‘The Real Picture’ to ask people who live and work in the area to share their thoughts on what’s really behind the rise.
The findings will be used to inform a wide range of partners within the Greater Manchester Integrated Care Partnership – including local authorities, the voluntary sector and health professionals – to “ensure a lasting and positive change towards happier, healthier lives”.
Jane Pilkington, Director of Population Health at NHS Greater Manchester, said: “Although individual motivations play a role in accessing food and maintaining a healthy weight, we know there are several contributing factors to the increased risk of overweight and unhealthy children in Greater Manchester – many of which are influenced by the environments that people move through every day.
“Nowhere is this more apparent than in urban areas across our city-region which have a high density of fast-food outlets, where residents are saturated with junk food ads. Healthy food choices can be up to three times more expensive than unhealthy and less nutritious options.
“By exploring the views of residents, we can uncover what’s really contributing to the rise in childhood obesity and work together to tackle it.”
For more information and to take part in the survey, visit www.therealpicture.org