Healthy Weight Project

Healthy Weight Project

An online workshop and herb & spice growing kit to promote healthy eating.

Benefit of learning new skills

Keep learning is one of the Five Ways to Wellbeing, five evidence-based actions which can improve personal wellbeing. Adults engaged in lifelong learning are more likely to be healthier, have better mental health and be more social connected. They are also more likely to participate in the community and decisions concerning the community. Learning new skills increases individuals’ employability, supporting the economic growth of the community. Adults involved in learning are more likely to be involved in their children’s education, helping them learn and raise attainment.


Ancoats, Beswick, Clayton & Openshaw

Project team

Manchester City Council



One Manchester

Be Well Team

Early Years

Healthy Weight Team


The Healthy Weight Project was a joint venture with Manchester City Council, MLCO, Buzz, One Manchester, Be Well Team, Early Years and the Healthy Weight Team.

The project started in response to the Manchester City Council Neighbourhood meetings where residents' needs and neighbourhood problems were being identified during lockdown at the critical start.

The project was to gage the neighbourhood priority and to document residents’ experiences during lockdown.

The Neighbourhood Team Lead from MCC and I then designed a questionnaire which investigated the unexpected benefits, the hardships, and a selection of projects which residents could get involved in.

These questionnaires were then distributed to known groups and residents within the team at large.

Following the feedback from the completed questionnaires we created a series of online workshops which consisted of weight management with healthy meals and getting more active.

In addition to the workshops and following the feedback from the questionnaires, the Neighbourhood Team Lead from MCC funded 100 herb and spice kits. These were then distributed to individuals who completed a questionnaire, known groups and residents.

buzz funded Sow the City to produce a video on how to plant, grown and look after your herb and spice kit.


“Thanks these are fab as it kept me busy during lockdown. I started gardening the first time round and I’ve got a little veg patch too!”

“Great to show the grandkids where food actually comes from and their now excited to grown vegetables at home”

“I would absolutely love to start a healthy eating project”


The workshops were poorly attended despite 20 residents signing up for these sessions. Only three residents attended, and this quickly dropped off to two.

Feedback was home schooling issues, childcare issues, and knowledge of entering online group.

The residents who attended expressed how useful these were so a decision has been made for useful service videos to be created for resident to watch in their own time. These will consist of portion sizes for adults and children, mindfulness exercise and general exercise.

The Herb & Spice kit segment of the project was a success, lots of resident expressed how much they enjoyed this project and how useful it was to teach their children where food comes from.

One of the residents who received a Herb & Spice kit enjoyed it so much that they want to get involved in starting a cooking group at her local Sure Start Centre and get local families cooking healthy meals.

Strategic links to local/national policies



Helping people live healthier lives

Healthy Lives, Healthy People (MH Government, 2010)

The Manchester Locality Plan – A Healthier Manchester

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Manchester Prevention Programme

Increased mental wellbeing

Manchester Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Greater Manchester Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Increasing community involvement

Healthy Lives, Healthy People (MH Government, 2010)

Manchester Prevention Programme

Socially connected communities

Manchester Population Health Plan


NHS Five Year Forward View (Department of Health, 2014)

Taking Charge of our Health and Social Care in Greater Manchester (GMCA, 2015)

Our Manchester Strategy

Giving children the best start in life

Taking Charge of our Health and Social Care in Greater Manchester (GMCA, 2015)

Greater Manchester Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy

Research/evidence base

Duckworth, K. and Cara, O. (2012) The Relationship between Adult Learning and Wellbeing: Evidence from the 1958 National Child Development Study.

Feinstein, L., Budge, D., Vorhaus, J. and Duckworth, K. (2008). The social and personal benefits of learning: A summary of key research findings

Foresight, Government Office for Science (2017) -What are the wider benefits of learning across the life course?

New Economics Foundation (2008) – Five ways to wellbeing

NIACE (2011) - Social value of adult learning for community empowerment.


Matthew Brown - Neighbourhood Health Worker

Tel: 0161 271 0564

If you found this page helpful, maybe someone else will too?

"Before I didn’t know anyone in this area, then a neighbour invited me to the afternoon tea, and I met lots of people who live just a few doors away."

Local resident attending Spoon and Ladle afternoon tea, Burnage

Local resident attending Spoon and Ladle afternoon tea, Burnage photo