On 16th May, the European Commission held an online workshop for the HealthyLifestyle4All initiative (HL4A). This 2-year initiative, launched in September 2021, involves a series of stakeholder pledges to boost healthy lifestyles across Europe. This webinar enabled pledge representatives to share their progress and provide feedback which will inform best practice guidelines for future action. 
Floor Van Houdt, Head of the Commission’s Sport Unit, opened the session by reaffirming the importance of these pledges for health and societal improvement. She further confirmed Commissioner Gabriel, who’s portfolio included sport, has stepped down from her role to go into Bulgarian national politics, leaving sport with Vice-President Schinas. 
Results of a survey on the status of the pledges, run by Ecorys, were then shared. 99 pledges were received by the EU, separated into 3 thematic areas. Half of the pledges focus on boosting awareness of healthy lifestyles for older generations (Pillar 1), whilst just under 1/3 aim to facilitate access to healthy lifestyles for marginalized groups (Pillar 2). Meanwhile, only 19% of the pledges focus on Pillar 3, to support a holistic approach to healthy lifestyle promotion. Most pledges have already been achieved or were reported as ‘likely’ to be by the end of the project in September 2023.   
Participants were then split into breakout rooms to discuss their progress in more depth. EuropeActive gave an update on our Healthy Hour pledge, which aims to boost awareness of the health and social benefits of physical activity and champion equality in participation, through our communication channels. So far, the pledge has included awareness raising activities for Pride Month 2022, a  for the International Day of Older Persons, for International Day for Disabled People, International Women’s Day 2022 and IWD 2023, and upcoming plans for European Mental Health Week and Pride Month 2023. In the subsequent plenary session, suggestions for improving future action following HL4A included co-creation approaches to initiative design and focus on shared goals between sectors to support multisectoral action.  
A funding guide and report of headline results from HL4A is expected to be published in the coming months.


May 17, 2023 By Ioana Marica