MORE than 20 early years providers who promote health have been praised at an awards evening at St Helens Town Hall.

Around 22 out of hours clubs; primary schools and childminders were praised for demonstrating a determination to improve the health of local children and their families.

The Healthy Early Years Status (HEYS) Award is accredited by the Healthy Living Team and commissioned by St Helens Council’s Public Health Team.

The evening showcases the early years settings in which everyone works together to provide children, staff and the wider community with opportunities that promote and protect their health.

There is increasing evidence that the early years setting can play a key role in improving children’s health, by setting strong foundations to help them and their families to make healthy choices both early in life and in the future.

There was also the Tasty Tuck Award - which is given to the primary schools and out of hours providers that best encourage the positive health of children and young people by promoting healthier snacks and drinks before, during and after the school day.

Healthy Living Team mascot Captain Tuck himself was among those in attendance to hand out awards.

Congratulating the winners on the night, Mayor of St Helens, Councillor Pat Ireland, said: “It was an honour to be invited down to present certificates and chat to those who are responsible for keeping the borough’s children and young people healthy outside of the family unit.

“It’s important that we recognise and applaud this. I’d like to thank the school, nurseries and childminders for their commitment and dedication.”

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