Thousands of Birmingham students swap pens for pans for cook-a-long with Michelin Star chef

Glynn Purnell has designed a recipe for Birmingham students to cook simultaneously

More than 1,000 school children from across Birmingham are set for a cookery lesson with a Michelin Star twist, as yummy Brummie Glynn Purnell will lead this year’s Health for Life Cookathon.

Starting at 10am on Tuesday 11th February, the Saturday Kitchen favourite will be joining students at Birches Green Infant School for a hands on cookery demo, whilst all the other schools taking part will be following along via a special step-by-step video guide.

Over 180 schools are part of the Health for Life programme, an initiative designed to encourage healthy eating, physical activity and growing food in primary and nursery schools. As part of the programme, children learn how to cook and grow their own fruit and vegetables which equips them to lead a healthier lifestyle. Many schools set up new cooking classrooms which they will be using when making their soup.

Glynn Purnell, who has held a Michelin Star for Purnell’s since 2009, has designed a special Health for Life soup to be made at the Cookathon that will feature vegetables that many schools have grown themselves, and using skills that the programme has taught them this year.

The recipe won’t just be available to the budding young chefs either. Mondelēz International, which funds Health for Life, will be sharing the recipe and video link to its UK colleagues so they can cook the soup at home with family and friends.

Health for Life is delivered in schools by Services for Education and has been running in Birmingham for nine years. So far, 182 schools and nurseries have been part of the initiative since its inception, giving them the support and funds they need to provide facilities and change their curriculum to embed healthier lifestyle activities. Services For Education will also be serving the soup in its offices on Cookathon day.

Glynn Purnell said: “It is vitally important that children learn to cook and eat healthily from an early age. There are whole generations of young people who arrive at their first home or at university and struggle to boil an egg!

Health for Life is exactly that – it teaches lifelong skills and habits that these students will use every day. It’s refreshing to see the art of cooking being taught, and I’m proud to have helped all of these students.”

Dr Sandra Passmore, senior advisor at Services for Education, said: “Health for Life has helped thousands of children to lead a more active lifestyle, and the Cookathon is a great way of showcasing everything they’ve learnt.

“Seeing how excited Glynn is about being involved is amazing. When our work is supported by such fabulous chefs like Glynn Purnell, there is no finer stamp of approval. I’m certain that Glynn and the pupils will teach each other a lot as well!”

For more information on the work Services for Education does with Health for Life visit

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Jake Malbasa
Grace Coniry


About Mondelēz International

mondelez international logo - partner of services for education

Mondelēz International launched the Health for Life programme in 2011 and is continuing the company’s long-term commitment to work in partnership, delivering a wide-reaching and successful healthy lifestyle programme within Birmingham.

Mondelēz International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDLZ) empowers people to snack right in approximately 160 countries around the world. With 2017 net revenues of approximately $26 billion, MDLZ is leading the future of snacking with iconic global and local brands such as Oreo, belVita and LU biscuits; Cadbury Dairy Milk, Milka and Toblerone chocolate; Sour Patch Kids candy and Trident gum. Mondelēz International is a proud member of the Standard and Poor’s 500, Nasdaq 100 and Dow Jones Sustainability Index.

Visit or follow the company on Twitter at


About Services For Education

Services For Education is an education and training charity based in Birmingham that works with 570 schools in the city and across the region.

Established in 2012,  and comprises the School Support Service and the Music Service which is part-funded by the Arts Council, England. .

Its School Support Service provides bespoke school improvement consultancy, essential safeguarding and curriculum training and innovative school activities that complement the curriculum and help meet national targets. Through a progressive approach to developing partnerships with Universities, Local Authorities and business, it  brings nationally accredited literacy, numeracy and emotional health development programmes and resources to Birmingham as well as supporting schools in the development of the physical and emotional health of pupils, parents and the community.

The organisation is the delivery partner for Health for Life in primary schools and Health for Life in nursery schools and has supported the programme since its launch in 2011.


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