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Aspire programme

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The project has a total budget of over 10 million euros and involves partners from across southern England and northern France. 

ASPIRE (Adding to Social capital and individual Potential In disadvantaged REgions) has received more than 7 million euros from the European Regional Development Fund.  

ASPIRE is an innovative programme to support people who are unemployed to reach a healthy weight and gain employment in areas where levels of unemployment and obesity are abnormally high. Using partner expertise and combining employability skills and healthier lifestyle choices, ASPIRE will support people to achieve their health and career goals. 

The project will provide a holistic approach to lowering obesity and unemployment rates in identified communities where these two issues are common and definitively linked. A recent Gallup poll shows that the longer a person is unemployed, the higher the rates of obesity, with rates reaching up to 32.7% after a year or more of unemployment.  

The aim of this project will be to improve the relationship that our participants have with their food, with access to local health produce and consequent weight loss, and to provide them with the skills and support needed to successfully gain employment. 

Identified communities


We are making plans to create a new food related community project in a new building in Churchill Gardens. We have listened to local residents and have adjusted our plans to take into account their views.

The space will continue to be used by the community café, and to provide a hub for the Aspire project, working with local residents who are overweight and unemployed to provide them with access to local healthy food and build up job skills.


  • Lead Partner - WP - Health and Europe Centre 
  • Kent County Council 
  • Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust 
  • Wellbeing People 
  • Mission Locale Picardie Maritime 
  • Maison pour l’Enterprise, l’Emploi et la Formation Santerre Haute Somme 
  • Bournemouth University 
  • C3 Collaborating for Health 
  • Betteshanger Country Park Ltd 
  • Les Anges Gardins
  • Vivons en Forme (Association Fédérons les villes por la santé) 
  • Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council (Sustainable Food City Partnership) 
  • Medway Community Healthcare CIC 
  • Centre Social Audrey Bartier.



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