boy1. What's in it for the kids?
2. What's in it for the school?
3. What's in it for the community?
4. My staff is have enough to do -- why should I load them up with more? 

5. We get fruit from the government - - isn't this more of the same?  

6. Ours is a high decile school - -  do we really need this.

7. Can we trial it with just one class?

8. Can we start the programme at any time of year?
9.How much of our time will it take up?
10. How quickly do families enrol?
11.I've got another question...


1. What's in it for the kids?

Longer, happier lives. Better school results. Better sports results. Better career prospects.

And our special parent's bonus: much better behaviour!

Healthy children are in much better shape to make their dreams come true.


2.What's in it for the school?

Better behaved, better performing, healthier, more caring kids who are a joy to teach. Now wouldn't that make life easier?

In the words of one principal, "Healthy Heroes integrates the new health curriculum into a single programme and applies it in the home."

We couldn't put it better ourselves!

The programme helps schools achieve top awards as Health Promoting Schools. Some schools offer it instead of homework.

 3. What are the benefits to the community?

Society needs healthy, disciplined, caring people who contribute to the economy through a long, useful working life.

Healthier children mean fewer career-threatening illnesses that shatter families and cost us a fortune in medical bills.

4. My staff have enough to do -- why should I load them up with more?

We know teachers have a heavy workload. That's partly why we ask the family to do most of the work.

It's the parents' job to make sure the children meet the  five challenges and record their responses.

All the teachers have to do is keep a register of the children's progress.

Schools tell us that the programme doesn't involve much admin time. But the payoff is huge:

healthier, happier, higher-achieving, self-disciplined, better behaved children.   

5. We get fruit from the government -- isn't this  more of the same?

We're glad they get it, but the habit needs to catch on at home too.

The fruit helps children to meet our programme's second challenge. But there's much more to good health -- and our holistic programme -- that just eating fruit.

6. We're a high decile school -- do our kids really need this?

31% of our children are too fat. And they're getting fatter. 

Over 60% of kids are driven to school and driven home -- no exercise there.
At home, kids in your area are more likely to sit down for hours in front of one or more screens. Again, no exercise.
If they snack and drink fizz as they sit around, they likely consume too much fat, too much salt, too much sugar -- or just plain too much.

And do they help around the house? At school? In the community? Or could they do more?

7. Can we trial it with just one class?

Well, that would certainly be a good start.
But do bear in mind that when a family signs up to Healthy Heroes, they tend to involve more than one child, in more than one class.

So if you really can't involve the whole school, we'd urge you to start the programme in at least two or three classes, and make sure the whole school does it at least once.

8.Can we start the programme at any time of the year?

Yes. After all, we're talking about helping your kidslive longer, so any time's the right time to start.

But that said, it's more normal to start in Term 2, as Term 1 is busy and short.

We expect children to complete at least 9 successful weeks in Term 2 or Term 3. This will earn them at least 25 points a week (5 challenges over 5 days) or 225 points after 9 weeks.

And if they fall behind? No problem. They can catch up in the holidays.
If you start too late in the year for children to complete 9 weeks, we can do one of two things:

arrange a special awards ceremony (especially for children moving on to another school)

carry all points earned over to the next year.

9.How much of our time will it take up?

Other club members are bound to ask you this.

We can tell you that with 70 members and a committee of around 5, the Rotary Club of Wellington North successfully launched the programme in 4 schools.
The workload wasn't onerous, with some times of the year busier than others.

These are the main jobs:

Plan the club's involvement.

Read the materials.

Approach school principals and leave with them copies of Healthy Heroes material.

When they accept the programme, ask whether children would prefer to use the website or hard copies, or both.

Order for the school extra copies of family packs from Rapid Copy, Wellington (04 471 2537 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).

Set up a launch meeting for parents, staff and Rotary.

Ask local suppliers to sponsor children's awards.

(if using the hard copy version) ask the school if you can read the kids' weekly responses -- to get a feel for their progress.

Organise an Achievement Awards ceremony at the end of the programme. This is to celebrate and induct new members into the Healthy Heroes Club, so make it an occasion.

Plan it with the school well in advance.

Photocopy the Certificates of Achievement on to light card, and have the school enter the details.

Invite early:
the local MP
one or more top sportspeople
a public health representative

Maybe arrange sponsored Club T-shirts (or similar) to present with the certificates (see back of Manual).

Ask the school if there's any help Rotary (and connections) might be able to offer. One school ran an art competition in 3 age bands on the theme of Fruit & Vegetables, and invited two Rotarians to join the school judging panel. The art produced was diverse, novel, colourful and fascinating.

10. How quickly do families enrol?

 As a rule, not that quickly to start with. But interest tends to build over the following week or two. The response is faster when:

                      -the sponsor dangles more popular 'carrots'!

                      -people can enrol on an interactive website.