Altogether Better - a Yorkshire & the Humber programme involving volunteer Community Health Champions engaging with communities to help them lead healthier lifestyles - is the latest winner of the Prime Minister’s Big Society Awards.
The programme follows Greenwich Leisure Ltd and CREATE in receiving recognition for its social enterprise activities and its impact on the community it serves.
The Prime Minister said:
Congratulations to the Altogether Better programme and their fantastic team of Community Health Champions.
This innovative scheme shows the public sector empowering local champions so that they can in turn inspire and support others within their communities to lead healthier lives.
It is an excellent example of a project encouraging social action and opening up our public services. That’s exactly what the Big Society is about - and that’s why I wish them every success for the future.
Roz Davies, Altogether Better Programme Director said:
We are delighted on behalf of more than 12,000 Altogether Better Community Health Champions to receive the Prime Ministers Big Society Award - it is a fantastic endorsement of the inspirational work being carried out in every district in Yorkshire and the Humber by people who give their time voluntarily to improve the health of others within their communities and workplaces.
We hope that this recognition from the Prime Minister will inspire and motivate our champions to continue with their amazing work and will motivate others to take action, get involved and reduce health inequalities within their area, and to join with us in our growing movement of champions with a network that reaches far beyond Yorkshire and the Humber to all parts of the UK.
Read more about Altogether Better
More on Altogether Better
Launched in 2008, Altogether Better is a 5 year Big Lottery funded programme, hosted by NHS Yorkshire and the Humber. The programme uses evidenced based models to engage and empower communities to improve health and well being. Through 16 flagship projects, the aim of the programme is to train and support more than 12,000 Community Health Champions in neighbourhoods with the highest risk of poor health who will in turn work to improve the health and well being of more than 70,000 others through peer advice.
Community Health Champions are individuals who are engaged, trained and supported to volunteer and use their unique life experience, understanding and position of influence to help their friends, families and work colleagues lead healthier lives. Community Health Champions not only inspire and support other people they can also provide a voice for local people and advocate for changes in local services and organisations.
More on the Big Society Awards
The Prime Minister recently launched a new weekly award that recognises the best examples of the Big Society in action taking place all around the country.
As well as celebrating the fantastic work already being carried out across the country, the Prime Minister hopes that the Big Society Awards will inspire many more people to get involved in their community.
On launching the awards in November, the Prime Minister said:
There are some amazing projects and remarkable voluntary work going on in towns and cities up and down the country, by all kinds of organisations from large enterprises to tiny grassroots schemes and inspirational individuals.
These awards are a chance to pay tribute to those making a valuable contribution to their community, the real champions of the Big Society, but perhaps more importantly, I hope they will motivate many others to take action, get involved and drive change in their area.
Individuals, businesses, charities, community groups and other organisations are all eligible if they illustrate the Big Society in action.
These might be:
- People or groups who are bringing their community together and helping to give people more power to take decisions and shape their area
- People who are transforming our public services, staff setting up their own cooperatives, or new providers or frontline staff finding innovative ways to deliver better services to the public
- Or people who are giving their time and money to help others, the unsung heroes changing lives in every neighbourhood of the country.
People can submit nominations via the website form. Nominees will then go through a selection process which will eventually involve a panel of previous winners and individuals from civil society organisations, Government and the private sector.
Award winners will receive a certificate from the Prime Minister and will be invited to a regular Big Society Award Winners Reception at Downing Street.
Read more: Nominate a Big Society Award winner