Targets and strategies

The following public bodies and organisations have a role in helping to improve the health, wellbeing and life chances of children and young people. They implement targets and strategies in order to do so and, although not all of the activities below directly mention child health, many relate to the wider determinants of health that will have an overall impact on child health and wellbeing. 

Scottish Government

The Scottish Government are funding and working with NHS Scotland to promote and support good child and maternal health, so that all children in Scotland can have the best possible start in life.

These policies to support maternal and child health are part of Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC) - the national approach to improving outcomes and supporting the wellbeing of children and young people.

The Getting it right for every child (GIRFEC) approach supports children and young people so that they can grow up feeling loved, safe and respected and can realise their full potential. At home, in school or the wider community, every child and young person should be:

  • Safe
  • Healthy
  • Achieving
  • Nurtured
  • Active
  • Respected
  • Responsible
  • Included

These eight factors are often referred to by their initial letters – SHANARRI.

They are wellbeing indicators which help make it easier for children and families and the people working with them to discuss how a child or young person is doing at a point in time and if there is a need for support.

Additional Scottish Government actions and strategies include:

There is also an emphasis on school meals through the following activities and strategies:

NHS Health Scotland 

NHS Health Scotland have published standards for weight management services for under 18 year olds, to ensure quality and equal access to provision across the country.

The funding is part of the Scottish Government’s ambition to halve childhood obesity by 2030 and significantly reduce diet-related health inequalities.

The purpose of these standards is to ensure a consistent, equitable and evidence-based approach to the treatment of overweight and obesity for children and young people up to the age of 18 years across weight management services in Scotland. The standards model a tiered approach to weight management services which broadly mirrors The UK Obesity Care Pathway.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

To tackle Glasgow and Clyde’s poor public health record, six core public health programmes have been identified in NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde's new public health strategy, Turning the Tide through Prevention, launched in August 2018. 

Programme 3 in particular aims to:

  • Continue investment in the implementation of the New Universal Pathway, Getting it Right for Every Child (GIRFEC) and Curriculum for Excellence to ensure that children and young people benefit from early interventions within maternity and health visiting services and school-based support. Maintain a focus on supporting parenting and attachment; readiness to learn and attainment; relationship development and employability skills and physical health needs such as oral health, immunisation, sexual health and weight management
  • Provide targeted support for vulnerable groups based on learning from Family Nurse Partnership, Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and poverty mitigation approaches such as cost of the school day
  • Provide public health support to service development/redesign and innovation with the potential to improve health and reduce inequalities at key life stages e.g. Best Start.

Glasgow City Council

In addition to their role in providing meals for schools and nurseries Glasgow City Council, through Glasgow Education Services' Physical Education, Physical Activity and School Sport Team (PEPASS) have Active Schools Co-ordinators (ASC's) who work with Primary, Secondary and ASL establishments across the city.

The team work to provide more and higher quality opportunities for children and young people to participate in sport and physical activity before school, during lunchtime and after school.

The team also manages and provides access to world class and local events and competitive opportunities for pupils across the city.

 Co-ordinators work closely with parents, school staff and pupils to provide opportunities that reflect young people's interests and connect to physical education and local community opportunities. Beyond the school environment Active Schools coordinators work with a range of partners including local sports clubs, sports development officers, community sport hubs, colleges and universities to provide pathways to support young people to stay involved and progress in sport.

In doing so Active Schools contributes to the health and being agenda, development of vocational skills and widening achievement of the young people in the city.

Other organisations and collaborations

Daily mile

Scotland was the birthplace of The Daily Mile: a daily, 15-minute burst of physical activity that has been shown to improve children’s physical, mental, social and emotional health and wellbeing. Over 800 Scottish primary schools currently take part in the initiative, which encourages chiildren to walk, jog or run a mile every day, normally during school hours.


Childsmile is a national programme designed to improve the oral health of children in Scotland and reduce inequalities both in dental health and access to dental services.

It is funded by the Scottish Government and has four main elements:

Since 2011, all elements have been delivered in all Health Board areas throughout Scotland by a range of health professionals.