250 Children Enjoy Gamechanger Day

250 Children Enjoy Gamechanger Day widnesvikings.co.uk

3rd March 2017

250 children from across Halton and Merseyside enjoyed a fantastic day of sports, activity and education with Widnes Vikings, as part of the Club's ground-breaking Gamechanger programme. Gamechanger is a unique project that inspires healthier lifestyles for school children in years 2-4.

On Thursday 2nd March, children from Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, Oakfield, St Michaels and St Bede's schools in Widnes; St Mary's, Palacefields and Weston schools in Runcorn; and Childwall Valley School in Merseyside, came together to enjoy an action packed day at the Halton Stadium.

The students enjoyed taking to the pitch, where they got involved in a host of activity sessions with the Club's specialist community coaches. They also learned about the importance of healthy diets and staying active, with a number of creative workshops.

The highlight of the day was the students meeting Vikings players, Tom Gilmore, Olly Ashall, Alex Gerrard, Jordan Johnstone, and Brad Walker. The Vikings stars spent time with the children, joining in with their activity sessions and answering their questions on how to stay healthy and strong.

Gamechanger sees Widnes Vikings' specialist community coaches work in 36 schools, promoting exercise, good nutrition and healthy lifestyles to 3000 children per year. It is commissioned by Improving Me, the NHS Cheshire and Merseyside Women's and Children's Services Vanguard. The programme is supported by NHS Halton Clinical Commissioning Group, Halton Borough Council, Liverpool John Moores University's Centre for Public Health and Sopra Steria.

Gamechanger has received national acclaim for the results that it has delivered, recently being praised by Duncan Selbie, CEO of Public Heath England. The team behind this project have also been invited to speak at a prestigious international health conference in Dublin in May 2017.

Catherine McClennan, Vanguard Programme Director for Improving Me, says: "The noise, energy and enthusiasm from children at the event was fantastic. Gamechanger promotes better health, emotional wellbeing and lifestyle improvements for children and their families. Working in partnership with Widnes Vikings, we've been able to inspire and motivate our young children and deliver great results."  

Richard Munson, Community Director for Widnes Vikings, says: "It was a fantastic experience to see 250 children having so much fun and learning about better health. As with all our Gamechanger events, there was a real buzz in the room - it was a powerful example of the power of sport and the local passion for our Club. This project is making a real difference. We'd like to thank the Improving Me Vanguard and all of our partners for helping to make it possible."  

Widnes Vikings star, Tom GIlmore, says: "The players really enjoyed having the opportunity to promote active, healthy lifestyles and to share our knowledge with the children. Widnes is a rugby league town, so it's great that we can use this passion to help local young people." 

250 Children Enjoy Gamechanger Day widnesvikings.co.uk