ISCA AWARDS 2023: Health

Hounouring Change-Makers, Building Healthy Futures




The ISCA Awards 2023 will highlight remarkable initiatives, activities and tools in three health-focused categories, along with exaptational ‘Role Models’ in working with socially disadvantaged groups.
We are thrilled to announce the topics for this year's awards:

Category 1: Physical activity and mental health

In this category, we celebrate the profound impact of physical activity on mental wellbeing. The importance of this topic cannot be overstated. Initiatives that successfully integrate physical activity into innovative approaches, interventions, or programmes to enhance mental wellbeing are deserving of recognition.

Regular physical activity, exercise, or sport brings significant health benefits beyond the physical advantages. Engaging in physical activity has positive effects on mental health – it promotes relaxation and boosts energy levels; reduces symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression; improves sleep quality, cognitive function and memory; boosts mood, concentration, alertness energy levels; and in general, providing a greater zest for life.

Recognising the transformative power of physical activity on mental wellbeing, we aim to inspire and raise awareness through honouring initiatives that effectively incorporate physical activity to promote mental health. Join us in celebrating projects that prioritise the connection between physical activity and mental health, and let us inspire a broader movement towards wellbeing through health-enhancing physical activities.

Category 2: Physical activity and active ageing

This category recognises the significance of physical activity in promoting active and healthy ageing. We recognise and celebrate initiatives that empower older adults to maintain an active lifestyle and reap the numerous benefits it offers.

As individuals age, staying physically active becomes increasingly important. Engaging in regular physical activity plays a vital role in preserving physical function, mobility, and independence. It helps to maintain strength, flexibility, and balance, reducing the risk of falls and injuries. Moreover, physical activity contributes to maintaining a healthy weight, managing chronic conditions, and enhancing overall wellbeing. Beyond the physical advantages, physical activity positively impacts mental health and cognitive function in older adults. It promotes a positive mood, reduces symptoms of anxiety and depression, and boosts self-esteem and cognitive abilities. Embracing active ageing through physical activity not only improves the quality of life for older adults but also fosters social connections, reduces isolation, and enhances community engagement. It creates opportunities for older adults to lead fulfilling lives, pursue new interests, and contribute actively to society.

By acknowledging initiatives that prioritise physical activity among older adults, we aim to inspire and promote active, healthy ageing. Join us in celebrating projects that empower older adults to stay active, maintain their vitality, and enjoy a fulfilling and healthy lifestyle.

Category 3: Health-promoting schools

This category celebrates schools that have successfully implemented comprehensive health promotion strategies. We commend educational institutions that prioritise the wellbeing of their students by fostering a culture of health and creating environments that promote physical activity, healthy eating, and overall wellness. These schools serve as exemplary models of holistic health promotion.

Health-promoting schools go beyond academic learning and prioritise the overall wellbeing of their students. They provide a supportive and inclusive environment where students can thrive physically, mentally, and emotionally. From innovative physical education programmes that encourage active lifestyles to initiatives that promote healthy eating habits and positive lifestyle choices, these schools demonstrate a commitment to the health and wellbeing of their students.

By recognizing and honouring health-promoting schools, we aim to inspire other educational institutions to prioritise the health of their students. Together, we can create a generation of healthier and happier individuals who are equipped with the knowledge and skills to lead balanced and fulfilling lives.

Category 4: Role models in health for socially disadvantaged groups (citizens' choice)

This category recognises individuals who have made remarkable contributions in delivering healthy physical activities for socially disadvantaged groups. We honour the role models who have demonstrated exceptional dedication and commitment to improving the health and wellbeing of individuals facing social disadvantage. These individuals have gone above and beyond to create inclusive and accessible health and physical activity programmes, services, or interventions that address the specific needs and challenges faced by marginalised communities.

Health inequalities persist among socially disadvantaged groups, making it crucial to highlight and celebrate those who are actively working to bridge these gaps. The role models in this category have shown leadership, empathy, and innovation in their efforts to ensure that everyone, regardless of their social background, has access to quality health programmes and physical activity opportunities.

Through their work, these role models have not only improved the physical health outcomes of socially disadvantaged groups but have also made a positive impact on their mental wellbeing, social inclusion, and overall quality of life. By recognising and honouring these individuals, we aim to inspire others to follow in their footsteps, fostering a more equitable and inclusive society where everyone has equal opportunities to lead healthy and fulfilling lives.


"Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or [name of granting authority]. Neither the European Union not the granting authority can be held responsible for them"