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12,000 people take part in County Durham health initiative
A NUMBER of organisations have joined forces to celebrate the success of a health and fitness programme.
More than 12,000 people have taken part in the Changing the Physical Activity Landscape programme since it was launched in February 2010. It was established to reduce the risk of heart disease and to get people active and healthy.
Some of the 23 organistions taking part in the programme came together at County Hall, in Durham City, yesterday.
Andrew Power, physical activity manager of County Durham Sport, which manages the programme, said: “The programme has become big. We’re expecting 14,000 people to have come through the programme by the end of it.
“We’ve got a good spread of individual organisations here today and, with six months left of the programme, we’re trying to sustain their work for the future.”
Dawn Phillips, public health consultant for NHS County Durham, was present to see the ongoing work.
She said: “We’re identifying risks. The goal is to get people active and able to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
“If we invest now we can prevent ill health. We have fewer people going to their GPs since this programme began.”
Linda Edwards is a lead walker in the project Get Walking, Keep Walking, and has lost more than four stone since starting 18 months ago.
The 59-year-old said: “When I first started the programme, I was out of breath all the time and now I absolutely love it.
“The number of walkers taking part really depends on who is looking after their grandchildren.”
The Changing the Physical Activity Landscape programme received £4.5m from NHS County Durham in 2009 to provide various physical activities and sports to people over 40.
For more information about the programme, visit county durhamsport.com/cpal-projects