What is the project?
Coventry's project aims to reduce health and wellbeing inequalities through sport and raising awareness of health issues. This will in turn help to develop a healthy, age-friendly city.
Who are the partners?
Why was this project chosen?
Local partnership groups were involved with deciding the project theme based on their interests, and both of the university partners identified their capabilities in delivering a project based on health, sport and community engagement.
Both Coventry University and the University of Warwick were already looking for ways to collaborate more on mutual areas of interest. Coventry city has had a long-standing issue with obesity in relation to its young people, which is a continual issue for the council, and the universities are experienced in engaging with young people and research into health. This meant the partners were a good match.
Why did Coventry choose the Leading Places programme?
The programme helped facilitate discussion between the universities and the local council, to speak openly on issues of mutual interest. They were therefore able to discuss long term plans for the city's health and development. Leading Places is a short term programme, but builds the foundations for these discussions to continue in the future and inform strategy.
What are the benefits of the project?
First and foremost, citizens of the city region will benefit from the outcomes of this project by having their views on exercise challenged, and having local government focus on their health and wellbeing. For local authorities, it will lead to beneficial changes in strategy, policy and investment. In the long term it will establish a relationship between the partners that allows university knowledge and expertise to play a central role in local authority policy making, which opens an entirely new approach to strategy and challenge established thinking.