Undergraduate Health and Wellbeing Outreach Programme

The Health and Wellbeing Community Outreach programme for undergraduate learners was funded by Health Education England (HEE) and has now finished. A final evaluation report of the work is available here. Universities in the North of England were tasked with developing innovative ways their health and social care undergraduate students could highlight issues around health and wellbeing in their local communities – particularly in school settings and offer an age appropriate health and wellbeing intervention. The work built on a pilot that was successfully completed by four participating universities across the Northwest. To read more about those initial pilots and a case study summarising the work click here or see the content below.

Ten universities from across the North of England were able to deliver projects of their choosing, despite the significant challenges of the Covid 19 pandemic. Delivering community outreach work in a range of settings – including schools, the voluntary sector and in local community settings. The target audience were largely school age children but included those with long term conditions and family approaches as well. All participating universities will be evaluated their own projects and an overarching report summarising outputs and impact of all of the work has been produced by Manchester Metropolitan University.

Findings will be presented at a conference to be hosted by the University of Salford in November 2022 – further information to follow.

For further information contact Alison.Farrar@hee.nhs.uk 

2021/22 Programme: Phase 2 Participants

Eleven universities from across the North of England are now actively engaged in delivering community outreach work in a range of settings – including schools, the voluntary sector and in local community settings. The target audience are largely school age children but includes those with long term conditions and family approaches as well. All participating universities will be evaluating their projects and we expect to deliver a recommendations report on all eleven projects by October 2020.

View the slides from the presentation for more information.  

Manchester Metropolitan University - Dr Julie Lachkovic - North West engagment of prevention and public health activities

This project uses an innovative multidisciplinary approach to delivering public health promotion and awareness workshops to secondary school children growing up in thearea around Manchester Metropolitan University. Through this project, undergraduate learners will gain direct experience in developing and delivering preventative healthcare interventions within their local community,increase their contextual understanding of the health needs and lifestyles of young people and experienceworking in a collaborative multidisciplinary team.

The overarchingaim of this project isto plan, deliver and evaluate a series of undergraduate learner-led public health workshops to young peoplein secondary schools in Manchester.


•To support the ambitions of ‘All Our Health’throughcollaboration between health and social care learners working to prevent illness,protect health and promote wellbeing.

•To develop, implement and facilitate healthpromotion workshops for year 7 or 8 young people, delivered by undergraduate health and social care learners.

•To develop undergraduate learners’skills in collaborative multidisciplinary working

•To raisethe visibility ofhealth and social care careerswithinschool communities.

•To evaluate the impact of these interventions for the secondary school participants and undergraduate learners participating in the project

For further information contact Julie Lachkovic at: J.Lachkovic@mmu.ac.uk

The University of Manchester - Dr David G. Allison - Undergraduate inter-professional mediated healthcare promotion in high schools

Peer-education, where student presenters who are of the similar age bracket as the young learners in high schools is a very positive and successful approach to education knowledge and awareness delivery. This is particularly relevant when dealing with contemporary life style related issues that affect health and wellbeing. Over the past two years third year Pharmacy undergraduate students have delivered a series of interactive awareness raising workshops covering a variety of healthcare issues relevant to 14-16 year olds (Alcohol, Diabetes, Mental Health, Antibiotic Resistance & Sexual Health Awareness) for year 9/10 (GCSE) high school pupils. These presentations, while giving insights into an important public health issue that affects all of us, were also used in a serendipitous fashion to plant seeds of interest about subject /careers/life style choices/ aspirational life style etc which would positively influence these children in their formative years.


  • To plan, incorporate, conduct and evaluate two additional student-led workshops (Obesity; Health Literacy) in high schools across GM which will support health promotion and prevention in local communities. 
  • To highlight issues that influence health and wellbeing (personal and public) and life opportunities of school pupils within GM.
  • To adopt an inter-professional approach to workshop delivery whereby groups of 3rd year pharmacy and 2nd year medicine students will work together to prepare and deliver these workshops. Medical students will also be invited to contribute to the existing portfolio of healthcare workshops. 
  • To measure the impact of these interventions on the wellbeing of the local community and target groups.
  • To assess the value of this activity on undergraduate education and healthcare student development.

For further information contact Dr David G. Allison at: david.allison@manchester.ac.uk  

The University of Salford - Julia Cappleman - Increasing asset-based approaches to the care of service users

Currently, student nurses have relatively limited opportunity to engage in asset-based approaches to the care of service users. Therefore, we welcome this opportunity to participate in this development.

The use of local community non-clinical placements is new and innovative for this programme. Students will be able to observe and participate in asset-based approaches provided by third sector organisations, looking at the interplay between different services to offer an integrated approach to care. 

For further information contact Julia Cappleman at: j.cappleman@salford.ac.uk 

The University of Chester - Associate Professor Victoria Ridgway - Integrating theory into practice for the pre-registration nursing provision

The main purpose of this project is to embed public health skills and knowledge integrating theory into practice for the pre-registration nursing provision. This will provide the undergraduate pre-registration nurses with the skills to deliver preventative and population health interventions to ensure every contact counts (Making Every Contact Count [MECC] 2017).

The key aims of this proposal are to:

  • Develop and evaluate a sustainable ‘spiral public health promotion and prevention’ curricula’ to be undertaken by all entrants to the Pre-Registration Nursing (PRN) Programme at the University of Chester (UoC) from September 2019. 
  • Embed and integrate outreach work as a core competency (NMC, 2010) of the pre-registration nurse curricula and practice learning environment in each year of the programme
  • Develop students enhanced awareness of social prescribing (Kings Fund, 2019)
  • Empower and enable students to have confidence in their public health skills and become ambassadors for their nursing field (MECC, 2017)

For further information contact Associate Professor Victoria Ridgway at: v.ridgway@chester.ac.uk  

The University of Central Lancashire - Matthew Reeves - Developing community outreach from within the Faculty of Health and Wellbeing

The aim of this business case is to express our interest in developing community outreach projects from within the Faculty of Health and Wellbeing.  Whilst some schools within the faculty have a wealth of experience in undertaking community outreach work with undergraduate students, this is an opportunity to share such experience across the faculty with schools who have historically had limited participation in such ventures.  For example,the Social Work, Care and Community have undertaken community outreach work in Blackburn.  Undergraduate students have worked in local schools promoting health eating.  They have also participated in neighborhood / community green space regeneration projects and the development of food growing spaces (to promote healthy eating).  Within the School of Nursing, undergraduates within the childrens nursing field engage with health education / promotion with pre-school children through the medium of the ‘teddy bears picnic’ in local schools and health melas.  Within the Sport and Wellbeing, a potential opportunity exists to develop a physical activity-based outreach project, which seeks to address mental health issues.  In partnership with mental health nursing, this would be undertaken in local FE colleges.

A faculty-wide steering group will therefore be established to build upon existing community outreach work, and develop new ways of connecting with and supporting the local community. 

For further information contact Matthew Reeves at: MReeves4@uclan.ac.uk 

The University of Bolton - Elaine Uppal - Student delivery of interprofessional care

Students will work together on interprofessional aspects of care including nutrition, infant feeding (including the UNICEF Baby Friendly Initiative standards); safeguarding, community profiling and development, empowerment and partnership working. The University forges strong partnerships with organisations within the town and the Bolton Award for employability and enterprise facilitates student development through volunteering, work experience, skills development, and a range of enrichment activities.

The University will work closely with practice partners and Urban Outreach an established organisation in the town to develop a project where students can work directly with families around a range of health and social care issues such as transition to parenthood, assessment of health needs, advice and support, child development. 

A steering group made up of the programme leads for each of the courses, together with representatives from Bolton NHS Foundation Trust, Bolton Council and Urban Outreach. Students and service-users will also be part of the project development through focus groups and ongoing evaluation. An action research process will be followed to allow the development and evaluation of the project to be documented (NHSREC and local research governance processes will be followed through the partner organisations).

The steering group will meet monthly, feedback will occur through mechanisms within the university such as programme boards and staff meetings. 

A faculty-wide steering group will therefore be established to build upon existing community outreach work, and develop new ways of connecting with and supporting the local community. 

For further information contact Elaine Uppal at: e.uppal@bolton.ac.uk  

New College Durham - Barbara Chambers - Involving students within the Podiatary Programme

This project will involve the BSc Podiatry and the BSc Sport and Exercise Development students. The Podiatry programme is a Health Education England (HEE) undergraduate programme that has been delivered at New College Durham (NCD) for 43 years. The programme delivers high quality podiatrists who when qualified work in both the NHS and the private sector. The BSc Sport and Exercise Development programme has recently been developed and includes a module relating to exercise and behaviour change in patients with complex medical health conditions, there are currently 90 students studying on the two programmes. 

For further information contact Barbara Chambers at: Barbara.chambers@newdur.ac.uk  

Hull York Medical School- Prof Gabrielle Finn- Teddy Bear Hospital (TBH)

Teddy Bear Hospital (TBH) is an initiative founded by the European Medical Students’ Association (EMSA) intended to help 3-12-year-olds to lose their fear towards doctors and hospital environments, mainly through role play where children bring their poorly teddies to see a teddy doctor. Hull York Medical School (HYMS) is among many national institutions participating in TBH. HYMS interventions typically target 4-7-year-olds. Historically, school-based workshops have been delivered by single student cohorts of medical students. However, the interprofessional nature of healthcare means that students from all professions should develop team working skills, increase their awareness of public health, and develop leadership skills, communication skills, and other skills that constitute key ingredients for successfully working in a paediatric population. TBH lends itself to the creation of an interprofessional education (IPE) intervention in this context.

We will bring together students from the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) at the University of Hull and from HYMS at the Universities of Hull and York. Students from the Medicine, Nursing (child, adult, learning disability, and mental health), Paramedic and Physician Associate cohorts will be invited to participate. Within the HYMS Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery undergraduate (MBBS) programme, this initiative will be included in the Child Health block in Year 4, and learning outcomes from that block will be linked to the processes in this initiative. Besides, the initiative will be linked to the processes in this initiative. Besides, the initiative will be linked to senior students in other HYMS health Professions Education (HPE) programmes who are working or interested in Child Health, and other MBBS students will be able to enrol as volunteers for extracurricular activity. This way, this initiative can serve as an evidence-based best practice teaching exercise in a range of programmes while promoting health to the wider population using state-of-the-art evidence from the health promotion and health intervention literature. 

For further information contact Prof Gabrielle Finn at: Gabrielle.finn@hyms.ac.uk  

The University of Sheffield - Professor Deborah Murdoch-Eaton- Live Well Outreach

“​Live Well Outreach ”is a project proposal that extends undergraduate involvement in health and wellbeing promotion in communities with poor health outcomes across South Yorkshire, specifically targeting Barnsley, Doncaster and Rotherham. This proposal is across faculty initiative which involves UG healthcare students in Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, Human Communication Sciences and at the evaluation stage, postgraduates from within ScHARR. This aims to further embed the concept of​making every contact count (​MECC) in health and care services within our future healthcare workforce.

For further information contact Professor Deborah Murdoch-Eaton at: d.murdoch-eaton@sheffield.ac.uk  

The University of Bradford - Michael Hellawell- Student engagement within communities regarding health and wellbeing

The project will be led from the Physiotherapy programme and staff team, but will link to education curricula across the Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy, Paramedic, Pharmacy, Radiography Optometry, and Midwifery programmesencouraging preventive healthcare practice in all future professions clinical practice.  This will give students the opportunity to engage with the general public regarding their health and wellbeing. 

The project will align with existing modules all identified as having a patient-centred health and wellbeing focus. The Students’ contribution will formally be recognised as part of the module and will contribute to practice learning hours where appropriate. The Faculty of Health Studies already has University based inter-professional education activities and students work in inter-professional teams when undertaking their professional practice placements.  The proposed project would allow learners to have an active role in the planning and delivery of a health intervention and to evaluate their own contribution to an inter-professional education element based at the heart of the community and here at the University.

For further information contact Michael Hellawell at: m.r.hellawell1@bradford.ac.uk  

The University of Huddersfield - Professor Barry Tolchard- Improving health outcomes within the community

Universities have an obligation to serve the local and wider communities from which it draws influence. This is especially so in communities which experience lower health outcomes, socio-economic disadvantage and decline. There is a competing picture in the areas around the University of Huddersfield with Calderdale having largely positive health data while Kirklees trends towards lower health outcomes. An example being, a cumulative of 77% of 40-74 years old or 13.3% of eligible people were offered health checks in Kirklees (below the regional average), only 6.8% received such a check.  We are aware from recent newspaper reports that Huddersfield town centre is considered one of England’s unhealthiest town centres, with one of the highest fast food outlet rates of anywhere in the UK. Kirklees has a below average life expectancy across all age groups and experiences higher overcrowding in houses with greater levels of disease associated with such conditions.  Overall, Kirklees is below average on all public health comparisons e.g., a good start in life, drug treatment outcomes and childhood obesity. Black, Asian and ethnic Minorities score significantly lower that white residents on considering themselves to be in good health. 

One approach to developing a collaborative relationship with the community served by the University is to help address some of these health and socio-economic inequalities. A number of provisions have been developed to address this including agile and targeted community pop-up clinics/fairs and more advanced student-led clinics. The School of Human & Health Sciences (SHHS), led by the Department of Nursing & Midwifery (DN&M), is proposing to develop a number of these options to complement the successful Podiatry Student-led Clinic. This would include pop-up health and social care checks in a number of sites, travelling health screening and advice fairs, and additional interdisciplinary student-led clinics. Many of these require facilities outside of the University while some are possible within certain calendar events e.g., open days, public facing events. Therefore, from a direct University provision, we will offer pop-up clinics on those days. Most pop-up clinics require very little beyond a room, table and chairs, dividers, some equipment (depending on the specific purpose of each pop-up). More specific student-led clinics would require other facilities such as access to water, examination tables/chairs, and specific equipment to screen for blood pressure, blood oxygen saturation levels, sight/hearing testing among others. This approach fits with HEEs initiative.

For further information contact Professor Barry Tolchard at: b.tolchard@hud.ac.uk 

2020/21 Programme: Phase 1 Participants

2020/21 Programme: Phase 1 Participants

The University of Lancaster Medical School - Hayley Willacy - Health promotion in schools – engaging year 2 students with the local community

During our 4 week Health Promotion in Schools course, medical undergraduates develop and then deliver health promotion activities to local school children in their school settings.
Secondary aims of the course include developing teamwork and health information communications skills, embedding social responsibility amongst the students, increasing the visibility of the medical school within the local community and providing visible role-modelling for those local children who may not have considered university, or medicine as a possible future option.
Local non-selective schools were approached by the medical school to take part in the project. They agreed to the students delivering one (hour long) PHSE or science lesson, to year 8 pupils.

The students attended two half-day workshops on campus. The first covered the role and importance of health promotion and which topics may be important to this age group. They also discussed the challenges involved in delivering teaching to this age group and how they might overcome them. The medical school chose cardiovascular disease prevention as the topic to be delivered, as this also complimented their teaching in that part of their course and was a topic with which they would be familiar.
The students discussed ways to make the topic accessible to young people. They had timetabled sessions to develop lesson plans beforehand and received feedback from the tutor and their peers. The tutors (experienced local GPs) quality assured the content and provided formative feedback and support during the workshops.

If you would like more information about this work contact Hayley Willacy at: h.j.willacy@lancaster.ac.uk

Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) - Dr Maxine Holt - The Wellness Project

Dr Maxine Holt is a Principal Lecturer in Public Health at Manchester Metropolitan University with a main focus on research and knowledge exchange. Her areas of interest include the development of training and curricula for those professionals who are involved in all aspects of public health work. The project entitled “Upskilling undergraduate nursing students to empower children's health promotion within UK school settings” involved enabling the nursing students to plan and deliver a series of health education sessions over half day workshop to 120 children aged 9-10 and 16 teachers from three primary schools in the North West. 

For more information about this work contact Maxine Holt at: M.Holt@mmu.ac.uk

Stockport NHS Foundation Trust - Jan Sinclair - All Learner’s Public Health Conference

In Stockport, we have always been very keen to engage our healthcare students in public health initiatives as part of the academic programme and ensure they are well-informed about the importance of maintaining a ‘public health mindset’ at all times, as an integral part of their role.

As part of this agenda, in 2016 a new initiative was planned in partnership with Stockport MBC, Stockport NHS Foundation Trust and Manchester Universities which involved delivering a ‘Public Health Conference’, for pre-registration health care students on placement in Stockport. The conference provided a wonderful opportunity for the students to learn more about public health services in Stockport and to explore their role in promoting health and sign-posting to services.
Students – then have the opportunity to sign up for local public health spoke placements thanks to support from the local public health team.

Future plans are to continue with the conference annually and provision of a conference “Toolkit” which shares the model so that other provider organisations could develop similar approaches.
Following the 2017 conference the initiative won a national Student Nursing Times Award for Partnership collaboration.

For more information about this work contact Jan Sinclair at: Jan.sinclair@stockport.nhs.uk

The University of Manchester - Dr David Allison - Peer Education: Putting our healthcare future in their hands

“Core curriculum public engagement workshops delivered to high school pupils by pharmacy undergraduates on public health topics designed to improve population health have produced outstanding outcomes for both pupils and students. Since 2017 over 2000 pupils across 12 schools have received these workshops, delivered by 288 undergraduate students.”

The aims of the work are outlined below:

  • To develop, implement and facilitate a wide range of health promotion workshops targeting year 9 / 10 young learners, delivered by undergraduate students as a core curriculum activity.
  • To  enhance the interaction between the University’s academics and students with whole school communities in Greater Manchester.
  • To measure the impact of these interventions on the well-being of the local communities and target groups
  • To assess the value of this activity on undergraduate education and student development.

Topics covered by our pharmacy learners include, Alcohol Awareness, Diabetes, Mental Health Awareness, Party Drug Awareness, Sexual Health Awareness as well as AMR.

For more information contact Dr David Allison at: David.Allison@manchester.ac.uk

The University of Chester - Gay Rabie - Helping you to help yourself

The university ran a health & wellbeing fun day based on specified requirements of a local co – educational secondary school involved. Academic programme tutors and post graduate Specialist Community Public health students (Health Visitors’ & School Nurses’) designed and delivered the fun day in collaboration with the year head. Topics covered included mental health and wellbeing, resuscitation and personal hygiene. The school was in an area of high deprivation and an age appropriate and supportive learning session was developed. 

The day was positively evaluated with plans to maintain the working relationship between the school and university.

For further information contact Gay Rabie at: g.rabie@chester.ac.uk

2020/21 Programme: Friday 21st February 2020, Cohort 2 meeting

On Friday 21st February 2020 a meeting at St George's Centre Leeds was held with all participating universities at the midway point of the project, providing the opportunity to meet, collaborate and share delivery models, consider the value of this work and how HEE could support adoption and spread. Our key vision for this work being that our future healthcare workforce are key ambassadors for primary and secondary prevention work in all healthcare settings.

Click here to access the agenda from the day, the slides presented or read our "Undergraduate Learners – Health & Wellbeing Outreach Programme meeting 2020" summary report.

2020/21 Programme Appendices

To find out more or to access the full programme click here. To access the associated appendices please click the following links:

Appendix 1Appendix 2Appendix 3Appendix 4Appendix 5.

Collated Project Summary


Access the eWin Principles of Good Practice when establishing health and wellbeing outreach work in school settings.