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smokefree drop inSmokers keen to kick the habit will have an added incentive if they make the change in March.

National No Smoking Day is on 12 March and Medway residents who quit with the council’s stop smoking service during this month will be in with a chance of winning prizes donated by local businesses.

Every year more than a million smokers use No Smoking Day as their motivation to quit and it is hoped people in Medway are no exception.

Anyone who signs up to the scheme in March and reaches week five of the seven week treatment programme, will get a free day pass to a local gym.

Those who go on to quit as a result, will be in with a chance of winning a prize.

Prizes range from cinema tickets, to hair cuts, lunches for two and a signed Gillingham FC football.

To pledge to quit visit the stop smoking team in Chatham High Street on 1 or 12 March, or call 01634 334800.

Those who successfully shake the habit with the help of weekly support sessions and carbon monoxide monitoring, will be entered into a prize draw and invited to a prize giving even at Gillingham Football Club on 8 May.

Director of Public Health Alison Barnett said: “Many people like to use the national no smoking awareness day as a starting point for their journey to become smoke free.

“I think it is really good that there is now the added incentive of winning a prize for those who achieve their goal. We want to help people who want to quit as much as we can and this makes it a bit of fun and gives people a small reward.

“I would like to thank all the local businesses that have donated prizes.”

For more information about the stop smoking service visit www.abettermedway.co.uk

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SONY DSCNew mums can find the help and extra support they need at Medway Breastfeeding Network.That’s the message from A Better Medway, which is encouraging more pregnant mums to attend a drop-in before their little one arrives to get tips and meet other mums breastfeeding their babies. More

Calling all families who want to get healthier and more active – healthy lifestyle course MEND starts again this September – sign up today.

As part of National Child Obesity Week (1-7 July), the Public Health Team is encouraging families to join the free MEND (Mind, Exercise, Nutrition… Do it) course. The 10-week course takes place at various venues around Medway and supports children aged between five and 13, who are above a healthy weight, and their families to become fitter and healthier. More

Gills Players sign up

Gillingham FC players have shown their support for a Medway health campaign, by making health pledges for 2013. The A Better Medway team were at the MEMS Priestfield Stadium on Thursday (22 Nov) to promote the Healthy New Year winter campaign and encouraged the squad to make a pledge, as more than 160 people in Gillingham and Chatham did last week.

The footballers’ pledges covered a range of healthy goals for 2013 including staying positive, reducing caffeine intake, cycling to work and eating smaller portions.
Defender Andy Frampton tweeted his support for the campaign after he made his pledge; “All in a good cause and hope the message gets out #livewell”.

Medway residents are encouraged to make a health pledge during November, December and January. Those who do will be entered into a free prize draw to win a range of prizes including an i Pad 3, Gillingham FC signed football and family trip to Diggerland.
Pledges can be made in person, or by post using the official pledge entry form, available at GP surgeries, pharmacies, libraries, community hubs, or dentists. Pledges can also be made online at www.abettermedway.co.uk/healthynewyear

The pledge entry form also contains 20 tips to stay safe and healthy this winter.
Make a pledge at one of the following events:

Gillingham Market – Monday; 3 December; Saturday, 22 December or Monday, 7 January 2013.
Chatham High Street – Thursday, 13 December or Thursday, 24 January 2013.
Strood Market – Tuesday, 27 November; Saturday, 15 December or Tuesday, 15 January 2013.
Rainham Town Centre – Thursday, 29 November or Thursday, 20 December.
Rochester High Street – Thursday, 10 January 2013.

For more information visit http://www.abettermedway.co.uk/healthynewyear phone 0800 234 6805 or 01634 334800, or email enquiry@abettermedway.co.uk

A new winter campaign run by A Better Medway health improvement services is giving Medway residents the chance to win an iPad, simply by setting a health pledge for the New Year. More

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