Free event aims to help girls in Hackney get fit

Members of Hackney Young Women's Group

Young women’s health issues will be targeted in Hackney tomorrow with a specially-organised event offering guidance on lifestyle factors such as drug awareness, nutrition and the benefits of exercise.

‘Respect Yourself, Respect Your Health,’ a free session intended to promote better well-being for the borough’s young women, will be held at Hackney Town Hall between 4pm and 8pm tomorrow, Friday.

It has been co-organised by Hackney Young Women’s Group (YWG) and Hackney Youth Service, and is intended to provide a fun way of teaching local women aged 13-19 how to stay fit and healthy.

A range of activities will be on offer, including workshops in dance and taster sessions in yoga, Wii Fit, and Aeroball. Advice will be available on general health, drugs and alcohol awareness, and healthy eating as well as free beauty and pampering sessions.

Highlights will include the ‘Just Dance’ competition, and performances with guests including R’n’B singer Princess Nyah. There will also be the opportunity to take part in a world record attempt for the largest female-only Skank dance.

Health education is of particular importance in Hackney, where lifestyle factors such as poor diet and smoking contribute significantly to ill health among residents.

According to a recent joint report published by the NHS and local authorities, the area covering Hackney and the City has one of the highest levels of childhood obesity in England, with almost 40% of children overweight or obese by the beginning of their teenage years.

Friday’s event is also designed as part of a wider YWG effort to bring together young women in the borough.

Councillor Rita Krishna, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, who will give a presentation at the event, said: “The events that are organised by the young women are extremely popular and demonstrate the commitment of the Group to provide activities that young people enjoy.”

The group’s contributions to raising awareness about getting fit, staying healthy and having fun in Hackney were acknowledged earlier this month when it was awarded The Diana Award’s Certificate of Excellence, a prestigious national award.

The ‘Respect Yourself, Respect Your Health’ event takes place at Hackney Town Hall Assembly Rooms on Friday 18 June. Workshops: 4-7pm; competition performances and presentations: 7-8pm.

For more information contact: Ciara McDonnell, Young Women’s Worker, on 07891 514304 or

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