The Football League Trust is acutely aware that they are in a position to make a real difference in their communities by promoting a strong HEALTH message to the community.

The Trust engages 50,000 participants in health projects annually, including drug and alcohol education, Mental Health, Stop Smoking, Sexual awareness, Heart Disease and Obesity.

The dominant health issue in recent years, though, has been the concern over increasing rates of obesity, particularly in young people.

Through their successful Community Active Schools scheme, Notts County Community Trust have helped to ensure the children of Nottingham can look forward to a healthier future.

The scheme, which was recognised as The Football League Trust's Best Community Health project in 2010, sees Trust coaches visit all the city's 81 primary schools.

They teach over 8,000 children a year about exercise and sport, and promote the benefit of exercise and healthy lifestyles across Nottingham to ten and eleven year olds.

David Crooks, The Head Teacher of Glenbrook Primary School in Pulborough, said: "The Active Schools programme is terrific, and it is of enormous benefit to the children."

Each primary school in Nottingham receives twelve weeks of activities a year - with the qualified coaches promoting healthy lifestyles through diet and exercise.

Notts County Community Director Steve Hill said: "It is the biggest project we've ever run, and it has proved the most successful because it has made such a huge impact across the city.

"From the off we wanted it to be something different, a scheme that would promote and embrace all the primary schools and with a powerful health message.

"It seems to have done that because we've had remarkable feedback from the work done by our coaches - and from one of our main partners, NHS Nottingham."

Figures show that 90 per cent of all children taking part in The Active Schools Scheme have improved their levels of fitness, while 92 per cent have a greater understanding of healthy foods and the benefit of regular physical activity, and most become more confident in themselves.

"While promoting a healthy lifestyle is the main thrust of the programme, crucially it is also about helping increase the child's confidence and self-esteem," added Steve Hill.

"Sometimes children who are not sport orientated get left out so, for example, the use of rowing machines in schools gives children the chance to take part in exercise and sport which is not dependent on their level of skill, state of health or fitness.

"I've seen children who perhaps didn't have that self-belief blossom because it gives them the opportunity to compete in exercise and sport activity properly for the first time.

"To see their smiling faces, many so proud of what they have achieved through that specific exercise, then that makes it very special for all our coaches who have worked so hard to make the scheme a success."

Notts County's Active Schools Project is delivered to each school once per year, promoting the key message that participants should take part in an hour of exercise a day.

A spokesman for Seely Primary School, Nottingham, said: "The sessions are well planned and meet National Cirriculum criteria for PE activity.

"It is a wonderful idea, and coupled with the enthusiasm and hard work of the coaches from Notts County, Active Schools is a wonderful programme that has helped many of our children to flourish."

The Football League Trust has therefore, through their links with their Trusts , concentrated on getting young people active and educating them on how to maintain a healthy diet and encouraging physical activity.

'Health' is one of four key themes promoted by The Football League Trust, alongside 'Sport', 'Education' and 'Inclusion'.