Healthy Eating and Physical Activity


What children eat and drink during their early years can affect their health for many years to come. General eating habits are formed in the first few years of life, so it is important to encourage your children to eat nutritious food.

Children need a healthy balanced diet containing foods from each food group so they get a wide range of nutrients to help them stay healthy. Children’s appetites vary depending on age, growth spurts, and how much activity they have done so it’s important to provide appropriately sized portions.

Being physically active every day is important for the healthy growth and development of babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers.

Support Available

School Nursing team

A key aspect of 0-19 service is to work closely with all partner agencies to ensure every child in South Tyneside is safe and has the best start in life.

The 0-19 team in South Tyneside monitor, assess, promote and support the health and wellbeing of all children and young people between 0-19 years. They work in partnership with parents/carers and other agencies to ensure every child has the Best Start in Life.

0-5 Years - Every child that lives in the borough has a named health visitor from pre-birth to school entry. There is no referral pathway into service as this is automatic at either birth or upon transferring into the borough. All 0-5 contacts are offered either in the family home, a clinic, nursery or children centre setting. Contacts include monitoring the overall growth and development of the baby/child, offering support and advice to parents/carers including maternal mental health, feeding & nutrition, safe home environments and minor illness. Additional support is offered to vulnerable families, children with additional needs and children in need of protection.

5-19 Years - All school age children have access to the School Nursing service and Young People aged between 11-19 years old also have access to a confidential text messaging service called CHATHealth which is staffed by the School Nursing Team. School nursing contacts include height & weight measurements in reception and year 6, vision screening in reception, targeted public health sessions in secondary schools which cover a wide range of health promotion topics.

Free holiday activities

Eligible children across South Tyneside will continue to access free, nutritious food and engaging activities over the school holidays, as the government has confirmed funding for the holiday activities and food programme (HAF) throughout 2024. These free holiday clubs will continue to run to support parents with childcare costs over the holidays.

Activities include:

  • football
  • multi-sports camps
  • creative sessions
  • cooking classes

Who can attend:

To be eligible to attend the free holiday club activities, children and young people must:

  • live in South Tyneside, and
  • be 5 to 16 years old, and
  • be eligible for benefit related, or be in a family currently experiencing hardship

We are operating on a trust-based booking system which will hopefully allow families who will really benefit from free meals and activities, to access them

To find out more, sign up using the link below:

Overview – South Tyneside Council

HENRY (90-minute workshops)

We offer a range of HENRY 90-minute workshops including:

  • Looking after ourselves (0-12 years)
  • Eat well for less
  • Healthy teeth
  • Fussy eating

To find out more about these workshops, you can get in touch by call 0800 783 4645 or email

Alternatively, you can call in to any of the Family Hubs across South Tyneside.

Find your local Family Hub



Information about support for health and wellbeing in education for children and young people with SEND including the support available, and much more can be found here.