The scheme provides vouchers which can be used at local shops to buy milk and fresh or frozen fruit and vegetables. Coupons that can be exchanged for free Healthy Start vitamins are also provided for pregnant women, breastfeeding women and children aged from six months to four years. The scheme currently supports around 13,500 households in Northern Ireland.
The Healthy Start website includes information on how to apply, where to get Healthy Start vitamins in Northern Ireland, and local retailers that accept the vouchers.
Day Care Food Scheme
Under the 'Day Care Food Scheme' all children under five who are in an approved day care setting for at least two hours per day are provided one third of a pint of milk free each day.
DHSSPS is responsible for the legislation governing the scheme in Northern Ireland. The Business Services Organisation (BSO) administrates the scheme on the department's behalf.
- Healthy Start
- Healthy Start - Do I qualify?
- Healthy Start - Guidance for health professionals and free resources to promote the scheme
- Information on how to claim vitamins
- Day Care Food Scheme
- nidirect - Free milk, vitamins, fruit and vegetables and infant formula
- nidirect - Nutrition and school lunches