Derry City & Strabane - Sports Day initiative is a ready, steady and go for local schools




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Sports Day initiative is a ready, steady and go for local schools

21 May 2021

Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Cllr Brian Tierney, has launched a Sports Day initiative for Derry and Strabane schools in partnership with Healthy Kidz and the Henderson Group.

The Mayor is encouraging all local schools to participate in the Healthy Kidz Sports Day in partnership with SPAR, EUROSPAR & ViVO, to celebrate the end of the year and enjoy some physical exercise.  As part of this initiative, he aims to raise funds for his chosen charity Aurora Counselling in a specially designed 'Beat the Mayor Challenge'.

Speaking about the Sports Day initiative, Mayor Tierney said: "I'm so excited to launch this campaign in our local schools. With children now back at school, I want to encourage them to get outside for physical activities, have fun and take part in their school's Sports Day. 

"Lockdowns and school closures have been extremely tough on school children and staff. What our children need now is a sense of normality. Therefore, through this initiative we are providing a solution with Healthy Kidz and the Henderson Group to relieve any stress and pressure on principals, and ultimately help them deliver their school's Sports Day."

Healthy Kidz provide all the resources that schools need to deliver a socially-distanced Sports Day. All resources are easily accessible online, free of charge and include the following content: set sporting challenges, how-to video tutorials and downloadable certificates.

Mayor Tierney added: "I've set three Mayoral challenges for the children to compete against me and I can't wait to see the results. The fun sporting activities include the traditional Egg and Spoon Race, a Welly Boot Toss, Sprint and lots more. The children will also compete against other pupils in their school and record all results in the Healthy Kidz website.

 "I'm planning to visit some local schools and I look forward to seeing the children being outside, laughing and creating memories. All funds raised from the Mayor's Challenge will be donated to assist Aurora Counselling to continue their charity work, providing such a great service for the local community."

Bronagh Luke, Head of Corporate Marketing at Henderson Group commented; "Our SPAR NI brand has been delivering sports day kits to every primary school in Northern Ireland for over 10 years, so when COVID hit and things looked very different last year, we were determined to deliver an initiative which kept kids active, brought out that end of term competitive spirit and put their wellbeing front and centre.

"This year we are giving schools the opportunity to sign up and receive a 'Healthy Kidz Sports Day Resource Pack'. It details everything from the sports day set up, to how to practice all the challenges in the run up to the big day, plus bringing that element of interactivity and fun for all involved."

Healthy Kidz is a holistic Health and Wellbeing Programme for schools, organisations and communities, aimed at increasing physical, general and emotional health of children across Northern Ireland and the UK. 

Paul Carvill, Director of Coaching at Healthy Kidz added; "We had a phenomenal success with the introduction of the virtual sports day last year, but there is nothing like the real thing for pupils, teachers and their parents to enjoy.

"We have had a lot of fun creating the programme this year, and we're delighted hundreds of schools have signed up and will be delivering the programme throughout May and June. To have the support of SPAR, EUROSPAR, ViVO and ViVOXTRA again this year makes it even better as we have prizes for schools to win, from fun days to kit, and we even have created videos of Sammy SPAR in training for his own sports day, which will provide more engagement for children."

To find out more information about the Healthy Kidz Sports Day, visit You can follow all the Sports Day action on the Mayor's Facebook page.

Mayor Brian Tierney with P7 pupils at St. Patrick's PS, Pennyburn, who took part in the Healthy Kidz Challenge. Included on left, Stephen McCallion, teacher, Gail Kinkead, Healthy Kidz Challenge organiser, and on right, Eamon Devlin, school principal. (Photo - Tom Heaney, nwpresspics)


Mayor Brian Tierney 'throwing the welly boot' in the Healthy Kidz Challenge held in St. Patrick's PS, Pennyburn. Included is his daughter Mary Kate Tierney (pupil) and Gail Kinkead, Healthy Kidz Challenge organiser. (Photo - Tom Heaney, nwpresspics)