The Medway Food Partnership was established in July 2020. It is a collaborate network of local businesses, not-for-profit sector organisations and members of the community working to:
• Make sure everyone has access to sustainable and healthy food
• Build the public’s education and skills around healthy food
• Create healthier communities and better futures for our residents
Our aim is to support healthy and happy communities whilst ensuring that we create an eco-friendly and sustainable economy.
Our food partnership forms a subgroup of the public health’s healthy weight network. Therefore, its overarching aim is to reduce levels of obesity and overweight in the community. It does so through the actions of the 5 key operational subgroups that make up the food partnership. They are as follow:
1. Poverty, food security and emergency food support
2. Healthy food for all and education and skills
3. Climate change and the environment
4. Business and procurement
5. Oral health
Having a wide range of subgroups ensures that healthy and sustainable food is on everyone’s agenda at all levels.
All five of our subgroups are actively promoting many great projects.
Chiefly, subgroup 1 is currently working to tackle food poverty in Medway by exploring funding opportunities to kick-start the Medway Food Hub. This will serve our diverse community with an ethnically diverse range of healthy foods. We are also updating the mapping of food provision and access across Medway to support those in need, especially during the winter season.
Subgroup 2 has successfully published culturally diverse Eatwell guides and is currently working to educate community members on healthy eating and improving cooking skills by providing cookery courses for all ages. Find out more about our family cookery classes here. The group has also been working to map growing projects and are exploring funding opportunities to support these.
Subgroup 3 has been working on promoting the water Refill scheme with local businesses with support from City to Sea. Moving forward, this subgroup will be working towards reducing plastic waste, as well as linking in with the Public Health sugar smart initiative to promote a reduced consumption of sugar.
Subgroup 4 is currently working to encourage uptake of more food related businesses to join the Medway Food Partnership and increase healthy vending and water refill across all Medway Businesses. As part of this subgroup, we have also recently commissioned the Soil Association to deliver their whole-school food and nutrition programme, Food for Life, to schools across Medway over three years.
The programme is working with up to thirty schools each year by:
Finally, having recently published the Oral Health Strategy, subgroup 5 is working to: