City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council: Year 2 Q4 update

Bradford Council will harness the potential of Islamic Religious Settings (IRS) and their communities as levers to tackle the cultural, and structural drivers of ethnic inequalities in childhood obesity in Bradford.

The Childhood Obesity Trailblazer Programme is funded by the Department of Health and Social Care and administered by the Local Government Association. Public Health England also providing expert support and advice.


  • First test and learn sessions with all place-based groups now complete. Working towards second test and learn on healthy diet and physical activity
  • Further refinement work on the draft toolkit to take place in the autumn, working group to be established for robust quality assurance and sign off
  • Toolkit training sessions to take place, first one scheduled for in early September 2021
  • IRS within Bradford created an umbrella group ‘Faith in Communities’ (with governance structure), registered as a CIC, which will support and enable delivery of health initiatives within IRS
  • Trailblazer work has had good social media engagement and highlighted as part of wider engagement about obesity
  • Bradford presented at various events including ‘Learnings from Trailblazer Childhood Obesity Programmes’ organised by Yorkshire Obesity Research Alliance (YORA); Priority Development.
  • LGA published blog on Learning from successful community engagement: Bradford Childhood Obesity Trailblazer
  • Two local initiatives which disseminated information about COTP via Zoom event 'Healthier Ramadan Event' 45 people attended and the event focused on promoting healthy weight in children, young people and families
  • Born in Bradford and JUMP introduced the Trailblazer programme and physical activities planning for IRS to local radio Bradford Community Broadcasts (BCB)


  • Reflection sessions useful to assess work taken place to date, any learnings or challenges and whether to amend approach
  • Digital co-production methodology found to work very well
  • Planning for project sustainability and engaging with the right people to do so is very important
  • Local communities delivering health initiatives using registered organisation like Faith Communities, offers best model for implementation of local plan


  • A lot of time and resources were invested into making IRS affiliated place-based groups registered bodies
  • Programme delivery based on face-to-face interactions impacted by Covid lockdown
  • Capacity of project team to complete the work on time

Next steps

  • Toolkit training starting in September
  • Building capacity of IRS as organisations to deliver their own localised obesity prevention interventions (done through newly registered community groups Faith in Communities which is linked with IRS)
  • Looking for more funding opportunities in the Bradford District to apply and become part of mainstream obesity prevention initiatives
  • Refine and finalise toolkit and ensure branding aligned with Living Well, Bradford’s whole system approach to reducing obesity