Food Routes & Big Cook, Little Cook

Food Routes & Big Cook, Little Cook

"Food Routes – Food for life for families"

What is it all about?

As part of the Leicestershire Healthy Weight Strategy, Leicestershire's Nutrition and Dietetic Service (LNDS) has been funded by the Public Health Department (Leicestershire County Council) to provide support to schools to help children and families to eat well, maintain a healthy weight and reduce the levels of childhood obesity. To help achieve this we are delivering 'Food Routes' in Primary Schools. Food Routes has been independently evaluated and has been rated highly by teachers and service users alike.

Food Routes includes an interactive and lively set of resources divided into 4 themes, -diet and health, –cooking, -food safety and -shopping, alongside excellent teacher guides to help implement the themes. The Food Route resource was originally developed by the Food Standards Agency but has been adapted locally to include a Big Cook Little Cook course including a supportive recipe folder and support for your School by the Food Routes Dietitian.

The Food Routes team is keen to work with you and offer you the exciting opportunity to be involved in this route to food in your school.

This opportunity has been fully funded by the Public Health Department so will be delivered FREE OF CHARGE to participating schools.

Benefits to Schools of having Food Route training:

  1. The Food Routes Programme supports the Leicestershire Healthy Schools Enhancement Model – enabling schools to contribute towards promoting a healthy lifestyle and help children & families learn more about healthy eating
  2. Free colourful resources are included
  3. Follow up support by the Food Routes Dietitian who will help to tailor the programme to the needs of your school
  4. A Big Cook Little Cook course for families in participating schools led by our Dietetic Assistant from the Food Routes team
  5. Cross curricular links using practical activities

Some comments from teachers who are successfully using Food Routes….

"It was good information coming direct from dietitians who are the experts"

"I think the whole scheme has been excellent and well resourced with many incentives"

"The children responded well to the work we did. The Food Routes team provided good resources and additional support"

And what is a Big Cook Little Cook Course?

Schools that are participating in Food Routes have the opportunity to have a Big Cook Little Cook course in their School. These are practical cookery sessions which last 1- 2hrs over a maximum six week period and run by the Food Routes team. These courses support parents to encourage their children to eat a variety of foods and learn together about cooking and healthier eating. Examples of sessions delivered include ideas on healthy sandwich fillings and healthy lunch box information, how to make eating '5 a day' fun and encouraging positive attitudes to eating using fun interactive tools.

Independent evaluation from Big Cook Little Cook courses has highlighted positive behaviour changes within families:

"It has been really nice spending time together – cooking as a family"

"We cook more often together and I am more confident that the recipes I'm using are healthy."

"The kids are confident now at cleaning, chopping and stirring food."

To find out more about Food Routes contact:

Paula Walton

Senior Public Health Dietitian (Food Routes)

Tel 0116 2630861