Healthy Eating

Good nutrition is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle. It helps to keep your body healthy and strong, as well as preventing illness. The South Coast Prevention Team work with settings across the sub-region to create healthy environments to work, learn and play in. This includes working with early childhood services, schools and workplaces to implement the Achievement Program, Vic Kids Eat Well, Smiles 4 Miles and the Healthy Choices framework.

The Achievement Program

The Achievement Program is a health and wellbeing program that helps to create a healthier
environment for working and learning. The program uses an evidence-based framework to support
whole-organisation health and wellbeing approaches in early childhood services, schools and

Vic Kids Eat Well

Vic Kids Eat Well is a new state-wide movement that’s focused on transforming the food and drink environments where kids spend their time. It supports schools, outside school hours care, sports clubs, and a wide range of community organisations to offer healthier food and drink options.

Smiles 4 Miles

Smiles 4 Miles is an oral health promotion program that works to improve the oral health of
children, their families, early childhood staff and the wider community. The program is an
initiative of Dental Health Services Victoria (DHSV) and is implemented locally by the South Coast
Prevention Team.

Healthy Choices

Healthy Choices is a framework for improving the provision and promotion of healthier foods and
drinks in key settings where Victorians spend their time.

The South Coast Prevention Team worked with local neighbourhood houses in Bass Coast and South Gippsland shires to increase the availability, access to and promotion of healthy food and drink options. The project was an expansion of the Making the Healthy Choice the Easy Choice project completed in 2018-2019 with local food retail businesses.

The project aim was to improve access to healthy food and drinks for volunteers and visitors accessing neighbourhood houses for classes, events and emergency food relief, with the overall goal of encouraging our community to make healthier choices every day.

Neighbourhood houses have implemented resources and programs that support our community to make healthier choices. These included;

• Expanding community gardens - with the herbs, fruits and vegetables grown being utilised in community meals, emergency food relief and cooking programs
• Building custom-made produce carts to support the development of community led produce-swap initiatives.
• Improving healthy eating knowledge and cooking skills through cooking classes.
• Promoting drinking tap water – with water coolers, water fountains and filtered water taps being placed in high traffic areas.
• Running education sessions with a local dietitian.
• Providing healthy eating handouts to the community, developed by the Prevention Team.

Printable Handouts and Materials

Project Update - Infographic

Tap Water Every Day Campaign 2019

Our water, it’s healthy, it’s free campaign was a social marketing project delivered between 10 September through to 10 December 2019. The campaign was targeted at reducing consumption of sugar sweetened beverages (SSB) and increasing consumption of tap water of teenage males (13 – 18 years) in the South Coast (Bass Coast & South Gippsland Local Government Areas).

Young Australian men (12-24 years) are very high consumers of sugar sweetened beverages and soft drink in particular. The consumption of sugar sweetened beverages is associated with increased energy intake and in turn, weight gain and obesity. It is well established that obesity is a leading risk factor for diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers.

Unlike other social marketing campaigns, Tap Water Every Day was co-designed with local young people. Teenage males worked together with the South Coast Prevention Team from start to finish to understand the issue and to ensure the campaign was relevant to them and their peers. The key messages of the campaign, the communication channels used and the settings targeted were all developed in partnership with teenage males.

During the campaign period based on ideas generated during the co-design process with our local young males and stakeholders, a variety of activities and events occurred across the sub-region to support the social marketing campaign.

Evaluation findings from the campaign indicated that there was an increase by 1 serve of water per day by the primary target audience and over two thirds (69%) of parents increasing the serves of tap water they provide their children by at least 2 per day.
There was an increase in the primary target market avoiding SSB post campaign, with 39% indicating they did not consume any SSB in the week prior to surveying compared to 13% pre-campaign.

Pre-campaign over 80% agreed or strongly agreed that tap water is an important part of a healthy diet and post campaign this increased to 87% of respondents. Conversely, pre-campaign close to 80% of respondents disagreed or strongly disagreed that SSB’s were good for their health post campaign this decreased to 73%.

The co-design approach utilised in the development and implementation of this campaign highlighted some key learnings for the project team. These learnings have provided much value to the South Coast Prevention Team and will influence future projects

To download campaign resources please click on the links below:

Poster 1 A4

Poster 1 A3

Poster 2 A4

Poster 2 A3

Recipe Card 1

Recipe Card 2

Social Media Assets - 9 Files (ZIP File)

Making the healthy choice the easy choice 2018 - 2019

The Prevention Team together with South Gippsland Shire Council and Bass Coast Shire Council have recently completed the Making the Healthy Choice the Easy Choice project with local food businesses.

Making the Healthy Choice the Easy Choice used the Healthy Choices: food and drink classification guide, which categorises food and drinks as Green, Amber or Red based on their nutritional value. Green-best choice, Amber- choose carefully and Red-limit. (The Traffic Light System). Individual menu items were assessed using the Victorian Healthy Eating Enterprise Food Checker Tool and assigned a classification.

During year one of the project the team collaborated with Environmental Health Officers to identify and engage a cross section of food businesses to participate in the pilot phase. Health Promotion staff worked directly with 5 identified businesses to co-design interventions that are achievable for that businesses. This process enabled staff to identify clear drivers for each businesses’ involvement in the project and build on these. During year two the project team circulated an expression of interest to all food businesses across the South Coast, using local government food business annual registration mail out to distribute. Furthermore, businesses that were identified as a good fit for the project were followed up with phone calls to support engagement in the project. As with phase one, interventions were co-designed with each individual business, put in place for a minimum period of 3 months and monitored during this time. This enabled interventions to be adapted or scaled up in response to the data collected. Each intervention was designed to encourage consumers to make healthier choices, by changing the placement, product, pricing or promotion of healthier food and drinks in preference to unhealthy options.