Gavin Newlands, SNP candidate for Paisley and Renfrewshire North, has outlined his continued support for the Daily Mile challenge. The Daily Mile helps improve the health of youngsters by encouraging them to walk a mile each day. So far the Daily Mile has seen over 180,000 children in over 1,000 primary schools across Scotland taking part in the initiative which encourages children to walk or run a mile each day.

The Daily Mile concept was developed at St Ninian’s primary school in Stirling five years ago and has since been successfully introduced in the rest of the UK, Belgium and the Netherlands. Encouraging children to get at least 15 minutes of exercise a day improves their physical, emotional and social health, and helps to fight childhood obesity.

Mr Newlands is the SNP Westminster Spokesperson for Sport and has spoken on several occasions on the power of sport to transform lives.  He is committed to supporting the Daily Mile challenge and introducing it to more pupils in Renfrewshire, if re-elected on June 8th. Information from Renfrewshire Council shows that only 20 out of 43 primary schools in Renfrewshire provide children with the opportunity to take part in the Daily Mile.

Included in the SNP’s manifesto for the council elections in Renfrewshire was a commitment to work with schools and parents to increase the update of the Daily Mile challenge for school children in the local area.

Gavin Newlands said:

“It is a fantastic achievement that over 1,000 primary schools across Scotland have recognised the benefits of the Daily Mile challenge – a great example of innovation in Scottish education that has gained international acclaim.

“I am delighted that several primary schools and nurseries in Renfrewshire are already taking part in the initiative and nearly 4,000 pupils have already benefitted from it. However, more can be done to ensure more Renfrewshire children are involved in the Daily Mile challenge.

“I firmly believe that all Primary Schools should be participating in this great programme. Not only is there a wealth of positive benefits in the short-term – the Daily Mile challenge also encourages children to pick up healthy habits that will hopefully stay with them for life.

“I truly believe that doing sport can provide multiple benefits to people’s physical and mental health and I hope every child will soon have the opportunity to take part in this initiative. If re-elected on June 8th, I will keep working on giving every child in Renfrewshire the chance to take part in the Daily Mile challenge.”