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Family Food First (FFF)

For many years, the NHS led a unique accreditation programme for early years settings in Luton to support and reward healthy lifestyle activities. The programme actively encouraged the promotion of good nutrition, oral health and physical activity.  The Family Food First programme is no longer running due to the economic impact of Covid-19. However, to support best practice and the promotion of healthy lifestyles to families, the FFF team have created a list below of useful tools & resources. For a summary of the impact of the Family Food First programme, please click here to view the end of contract report. 

Useful Tools & Resources

  1. Meeting standards of best practice for health promotion

    FFF self-audit checklist-This checklist has been created to help early years' providers compare their practices to best practice standards for healthy lifestyle education & promotion. It is quick and easy to do and can serve as supporting evidence for Ofsted visits. The FFF team recommend that you complete the checklist alongside the FFF standards & guidance document as a reference. Click here for the FFF self-audit checklist.

    For Nutrition and Health Policy guidance, please click here.

  2. Training

    The FFF team have compiled a list of online webinars to support continual professional development. For access to the webinars, click here. Topics include: 

    • Nutrition Training for the under 5’s
    • Physical activity for the early years’
    • Starting solids
    • Parent Engagement
    • Public health campaigns
    • Fussy eating (patient webinars)


  3. Catering support

    To perform well against the new OFSTED standards set by the Common Inspection Framework, early years settings need to be confident they can provide evidence of the nutritious food they offer to children. The FFF catering self-audit tool is based on the Eat Better Start Better voluntary guidelines and has been created to help child care providers compare their catering practices to best-practice standards for the early years. Please click here for the FFF catering self-audit tool.

    Recipe ideas- for healthy recipes that you can make in your setting and share with parents and carers,  please view our Family Food First Recipe Book compilation.

    See a list of other useful tools & resources to support early years catering here.

  4. Healthy packed lunches

    Parents often struggle to know what makes a healthy packed lunch for their child and may provide packed lunches lacking in nutritional quality.

    Healthy Packed Lunch Toolkit- The FFF team have created this toolkit to inspire parents to pack healthy lunch boxes for their children, and promote the importance of packing a healthy lunch. To download the toolkit, please click here.

    The FFF team also created packed lunch videos to share with families. For access, please click here.

  5. Nutrition Education & Support

    Children should be encouraged to learn about food and how to eat healthily. Being able to reference nutrition education in setting OFSTED inspections, has been a contributing factor to settings being awarded ‘outstanding’.  The FFF team have developed a Nutrition Education Activities document, full of fun activity ideas that you can try out in your setting to teach children about healthy eating and nutrition. A FFF Activity evaluation form was created to encourage reflection.

    The lack of positive nutritional advice is often cited in those settings receiving a ‘requiring improvement’ judgement from OFSTED. For useful tools and resources to support parents on nutritional issues, please click here.

  6. Infant Nutrition & breastfeeding

    We want every child to have the best start to life and therefore we encourage optimal infant nutrition practices. Breastfeeding and the uptake of healthy start vitamins or vitamin D supplements at birth are encouraged. Flying Start Luton provides more information on where parents can purchase vitamins for their child.  As a setting, there are ways that you can support parents with infant feeding and make your setting breastfeeding friendly. Please click here, for useful materials and campaigns on this topic.  Also, a useful leaflet has been created to signpost parents where they can get infant feeding support in Luton. For further help and assistance, please consider contacting the Health Visiting team

  7. Physical Activity education & support

    Children should be encouraged to be physically active, meet the department of health recommendations and master the fundamental movement skills. The FFF team have developed a Physical Activity booklet, full of fun activity ideas that you can try out in your setting ,to teach and encourage children to be physically active . A FFF Activity evaluation form was created to encourage reflection.

    For useful tools and resources to support parents on physical activity issues, please click here.

  8. Healthy celebrations

    Whatever the celebration taken place, it is good practice to ensure the food and activities you offer reflect the healthy lifestyle ethos of your setting. To support you with this, please click here for useful tips, ideas and guidance. 

  9. Health promotional tools

    The 10 key messages are info-graphics that are great health promotional tools. They are available to download here and can be used in newsletters and on social media platforms.

    The FFF team have developed a communications pack for settings to use as a template to aid health promotion. In addition, to support reflective practice, please click here for the FFF working with families feedback form.

  10. Healthier Communities

    Discover a range of ideas about healthy ways you can get involved in your community and help to improve community health here.

  11. Oral health

    For useful tools & resources for oral health promotion, please click here.

  12.  Flavour school

Flavour School is a sensory education intervention that encourages children to explore food and flavour through the senses. More information about the origins of Flavour School and its founders can be found here. The intervention originally only targeted primary school-aged children, but the FFF team collaborated with the Flavour School founders to adapt Flavour School for the early years. In a FFF pilot run in 2019, the Flavour School intervention increased children’s willingness to try new foods.  A setting case study can be found here.

A toolkit was designed to help settings run the flavour school intervention. These draft materials were developed in partnership with Flavour School and through our pilots with local nurseries. Please click here for the toolkit, which includes the flavour school training webinar. For the most up-to-date resources and/or if you would like to get support from Flavour School to introduce the programme in your setting, please contact

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