Healthy Early Years London

Healthy Early Years London (HEYL) Award for Health, Wellbeing and Education

A guide for parents and carers

What is the Healthy Early Years London (HEYL) programme?

The Healthy Early Years London (HEYL) programme works with Early Years settings and childminders to support and encourage their work on health and wellbeing.


HEYL helps settings and to identify their own good practice as well as areas to develop, focusing on health and wellbeing. HEYL complements and enhances the statutory Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) which sets the standards to ensure that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe. HEYL also encourages joint work with parents and carers involving Early Years providers, health and other services that can support families.


HEYL covers a number of important areas of health, wellbeing and education for your child, including: healthy eating; breastfeeding and starting solid food; oral health; physical activity; physical development; reducing sedentary (inactive) behaviour; speech, language and communication; early cognitive development; social and emotional health and wellbeing; parenting and home learning; home safety, accident prevention and reducing injuries; supporting children with chronic health conditions; special educational needs and disabilities; infection control and immunisations; parent and staff health concerns, including: mental health, alcohol and substance misuse, smoking and sustainability e.g. air quality.


Some examples of activities in the programme are:


•   Healthy eating: your child will learn about what kind of food is good for them and are encouraged to try healthy food


•   Physical activity: you and your child will be encouraged to walk or cycle to the setting and participate in many exciting and challenging physical activities within the setting


•   Emotional health and wellbeing: your child will learn about their own feelings and how to express and manage them


What are the advantages for children, Early Years providers and communities participating in Healthy Early Years London?

A Healthy Early Years London setting promotes the health and wellbeing of its children, parents/carers and staff, by what is taught in the setting and through information and ideas for families about further support available in the local community.




Your child/children will be more confident, motivated and will learn the skills and information to make important life and health choices. Children will gain access to a range of support services and the setting will invest in their personal and social development.


Early Years Setting


Our setting will improve our performance and meet the Voluntary Food and Drink Guidelines for Early Years Settings in England.


The professional development of staff will be further supported. The setting will also strengthen its links within the local community, by developing stronger external partnerships with services and with parents or carers.


Parents and Carers


There will be many opportunities for you to influence and contribute to what goes on in our setting and work alongside us. Through regular communication you will be provided with information and guidance on how you can support your child’s health, wellbeing, happiness and education.

How can you help?

Get involved:

•   Support policy development

•   Attend parent sessions and consultations


Support your child:

•   Pack a healthy lunch/healthy snacks

•   Drink plenty of water not fizzy drinks

•   Walk to the setting

•   Take your child/children to the park

•   Join your child/children in available activities supporting healthy eating & physical activity

•   Ensure your child/children has/have plenty of sleep

•   Get your child/children to the setting on time

•   Sing songs and read stories with your child/children


Family activity:

•   Try to eat five portions of fruit and vegetables a day

•   Make your home smoke-free

•   Walk to the setting

•   Have an indoor picnic

•   Get skipping

•   Take a step-o-meter challenge

•   Ditch the remote