20/01/2014 - Permalink

Call out to young people to become Shropshire’s Young Health Champions

Related topics: Community / Health / Partner organisations

Young people across Shropshire are being encouraged to come forward to become Young Health Champions in a bid to improve and support the health and wellbeing of young people in the county.

The call out is in response to a health project supported by Shropshire Council’s Children’s Services and Shropshire’s Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in partnership with Shropshire and Telford NHS Trust and other health organisations to recruit and train 300 young people to become health champions for children and young people.

The Young Health Champions project has been made possible thanks to funding from the Big Lottery. So far over 100 young people have signed up and will be undergoing training to become health advocates on behalf of their peers. They will also act as consultants to local health providers, offering advice on how to make their services better targeted to the needs of young people.

As a Young Health Champion you will help to improve children’s and young people’s health by;

  • working with other young people to help to set up and support new health projects
  • becoming an active and key partner working with health organisations to help shape health services for young people 
  • influencing young people to live healthier and active lives and provide peer support and a voice for young people around health issues

Councillor Karen Calder, Cabinet Member for Health at Shropshire Council said;

“I am delighted that the Big Lottery has funded this great project. This is a fantastic opportunity for Shropshire’s Children and young people to get really involved and help shape local health and wellbeing services for their peers. Shropshire’s Young Health Champions will play a vital role in ensuring their peers have access to services that are tailored to their needs.

“With the challenges posed by an ever aging population and the an increase of long term conditions more commonly associated with increased age now is the time to start creating an ethos of ‘self-help’ in our younger generations. I am confident that our young health champions will have a positive influence on the long term out comes for young people as they go forward into adulthood.”

Councillor Ann Hartley, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services added;

“The great advantage of being a Young Health Champion is that you will get to learn new skills, build up your confidence and share your knowledge and learning with your friends, families and other young people in the wider community.”

“If you are a community spirited young person between the ages of 11 to 25 who is looking for a new venture and want to make a difference to young people’s health in your local community, we really want to hear from you.”

Karen Higgins, Young People’s Health Champion Project Manager at Shropshire’s CCG added;

“Shropshire’s Young Health Champions project is a real opportunity to empower young people through training and mentoring work to help improve the health and wellbeing of children and people in our local communities.

“We hope the Young Health Champions project will provide the opportunity to reach local young people, in particularly those who need it most, and encourage them to build healthier positive lives.”

If you are a young person between the ages of 11 and 25 or know someone who is and would like to get involved contact Lorraine Warrender Health Champion Manager Youth at Shropshire Council on 07582 002587 or email lorraine.warrender@shropshire.gov.uk.
Interested parties can also come along to find out more about becoming a Young Health Champion at a young health champion conference on Saturday 15 February at CENTRAL community centre, Shrewsbury Baptist Church, Claremont Street, between 11 and 3pm.

Further information:

In May 2013, Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), working in partnership with Altogether Better successfully secured funding from the Big Lottery for the purpose of developing ‘Health Champions’.