Calling families in East London! - Participate in the ‘Our Healthy Households Study’
By Meredith K.D. Hawking
In the face of growing social and public health challenges, we are launching a new study to explore the everyday practices of families, and how they work towards being a healthy and happy household.
In recent months we have been reminded that families face an ever-growing list of challenges and goals that must be managed on a daily basis. These goals might include: eating healthy meals, spending quality time together as a family, taking part in faith-based activities, getting good sleep, and achieving good grades in school. We are being bombarded by messages from the media, doctors, schools about managing and looking after children’s weight. But, balancing the needs of a young family to boost health, happiness, safety and ensure each member of the household flourishes can be affected by current events such as the pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis.
Key household decisions such as whether to ‘heat or eat’ have made headline news in recent months. Against this backdrop, health-related goals to achieve a healthy weight or take daily exercise may seem unrealistic. I wish to hear from families who are doing their best to lead healthy and happy lives in their current circumstances. Rather than asking what families are not doing, I will focus on the good things that families are doing. What can they manage during their normal routines? What they are prioritizing? What are they struggling with? Taking an ‘everyday ethics’ perspective, I want to discover what living a healthy happy life means to different people.
I am inviting families living in East London (Tower Hamlets, Newham, Hackney, Barking and Dagenham, Havering, Redbridge, Waltham Forest) to take part in an online study using qualitative methods. Over a 6 month period, I am asking families to take part in two interviews and a focus group, to send in some photos and drawings, and to keep a decision diary for 2 days. To take part, families will need use of a smartphone, tablet or laptop and have an internet connection. For each stage of the study, the family will receive shopping vouchers for their time and participation.