The Food & Health Project:
Promoting Healthier eating in the Midlands

The Food and Health project is a joint initiative between Westmeath Community Development Ltd and HSE Midlands Area.
The project was originally set up in 1999 and provides nutrition education courses targeted at groups in the community that are cooking on a budget.
Are you interested in:
  • Healthy Eating
  • Cooking on a budget
  • Hosting a practical, fun course, Which is delivered in a user friendly practical way
If so, please contact the Edel or Yvonne at the address below:
Food & Health Coordinator.
Westmeath Community Development,
Ball Alley Lane,
Co. Westmeath
Tel : 09064 94555

A Joint initiative between HSE Midlands and Westmeath Community Development


Live Longer and Prosper

Westmeath Community Development were involved in the "Live Longer and Prosper" programme which ran over 4 weeks.  Approximately 140 people took part in the programme which was ran in conjunction with Westmeath County Council, the HSE, Westmeath Sports Partnership, Mental Health Ireland and ourselves. 

Live Longer and Prosper 5


Request for Tender Childhood Obesity Research Project - Follow up audit

wcdlWCD seeks tenders for a Childhood Obesity Research Project - Follow up audit.


Overweight and obesity is increasing worldwide amongst both adults and children and has been described as a ‘global epidemic’ (WHO 2003).  Excess weight in childhood can have serious health consequences in both childhood and adult life. 

A community service has been set up to address this childhood issue in counties Laois, Offaly, Longford and Westmeath.  This is collaboration between the community nutrition and dietetic service and WCDL. 

Recent research assessed the effectiveness of this community approach to the treatment of childhood obesity/overweight.

A follow up study undertaken to determine parent needs with regard to dietetic input for their children, has been undertaken.

This research project will collate the information collected from parents and will inform future dietetic practice.

The Researcher:

The researcher will carry out the following tasks:

  • Review relevant literature
  • Review records and collate pertinent information
  • Develop a database and input data using SPSS
  • Analyse data and formulate results and conclusions in consultation with supervisors
  • Make recommendations based on results and relevant literature.
  • Draft article and circulate for comments.
  • Amend as necessary depending on referees comments and suggestions until article is accepted for publication.
  • Make final adjustments depending on referees and editor comments and submit for publication.
  • Write up, submit for publication and have published an article in an appropriate journal or repository

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Request for Tender: ACE Schools Programme nutrition research project in the community

Request for Tender:  ACE Schools Programme nutrition research project in the community


The ACE (Activity Confidence Eating) Schools Programme is an example of a whole school intervention, focused on promoting four main aspects of health within the school i.e. nutrition, physical activity, mental and dental health. The programme is part of the Health Promoting Schools initiative in the midlands region. The programme aims to encourage schools to develop health promoting environments; making the healthy choice the easier choice for all in the school community.   Each school that signs up to the ACE Schools Programme will aim to work towards an award / recognition level of their choice and will be helped supported through out the academic year by the programme’s ACE Schools Supporter. This academic year (2014-2015) the ACE Schools Programme will be rolled out across the 4 counties of the midlands: Laois, Offaly, Longford and Westmeath.

The ACE Schools Programme Supporter:

The researcher will carry out the following tasks:

  • Provide support for existing schools in the ACE Schools Programme.
  • Provide training and support for new schools recruited into the ACE Schools Programme through the Health Promoting Schools Programme.
  • Liaison with Community Nutrition and Dietetic Service and Health Promoting Schools Officers.
  • Development of newsletters for schools throughout the academic year.
  • ACE Schools website maintenance throughout the academic school year.
  • Recording all information gathered at each school visit and provision of formal reports on school progress.
  • Award / recognition level determination in consultation with ACE Schools Programme Team.

The researcher will liaise with WCDL and the Community Nutrition & Dietetic service on a regular basis with regards to progress with the project.

Person requirements:


  • Degree in Human Nutrition & Dietetics form DIT/TCD or equivalent.
  • Experience in community dietetics and/or research in dietetics for young people.
  • Registered as self employed (evidence required)
  • Professional indemnity insurance (evidence required)          
  • Car driver with full licence


Enquires to: Cara Cunningham, Senior Community Dietitian, Phone: 09064 24845


Duration: October 2016- August 2017


Starting date: October 2016


Application: Tenders to be submitted to Frank Murtagh, Assistant CEO, WCDL, C/O ACT, Ball Alley Lane, Athlone, Co. Westmeath

Closing Date for tender submission: Monday 10th October 2016

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Healthy Incentive for Pre-Schools (HIP)






 The Healthy Incentive for Pre-Schools (HIP) Project


Project Proposal


The ‘Healthy Incentive for Pre-schools’ (HIP) project is an ongoing child care intervention in the midlands which aims to evaluate pre-schools’ progress through an incentive scheme to improve pre-school nutrition practices in full day care (FDC) pre-schools. These provide care for children aged 3 months to 5 years for greater than 5 hours per day.

The project aims to encourage full day care pre-schools to follow best practice in accordance with particular guidelines given to them, over the course of a year, with the help and support of health worker (HIP Supporter) who is trained to facilitate the pre-school in the award process


  1. To recruit a qualified Dietitian / nutritionist (that meets with criteria outlined) and to train as HIP Supporter; to provide support to pre-schools in 2016 (April - June).


Recruit one Supporter to support all pre-schools – staged payment


  • How do you guarantee all school visits and associated work carried out if providing overall fee? Payment will be made as follows:
  • 10% (of the maximum amount) on signing of contract and submission of initial invoice, and thereafter based on progress report at agreed intervals, and following timeframe for completion agreed with project supervisor.
  • Tender per pre-school: It is envisaged that supporter will cover all pre-schools in the midland region undertaking the HIP programme. Each pre-school will be allocated up to 11 hours with project payment not exceeding €33 per hour.

Duration: calendar year: 2016

Starting date: April 2016.


Recently completed Healthy Food Made Easy Course in Athlone


Here are some of the recent participants from Athlone's Gateway Youth Project who participated in a week long Healthy Food Made Easy Course (27.06.16 - 01.07.16). 

What is the Healthy Food Made Easy course?

If you are interested in:

  • Healthy Eating?
  • Cooking on a budget?
  • Hosting a practical, fun course, Which is delivered in a user friendly practical way?

Why not click here for brochure and if you are interested in doing a course, please contact the Edel or Yvonne at the address below:

Food & Health Coordinator
Westmeath Community Development,
C/O ACT Ball Alley Lane,
Co. Westmeath

Tel : 09064 93906