Love Island Star Anton Danyluk talks about young people’s health

It was a pleasure to welcome Love Island Start Anton to Liverpool today. It is part of his national programme to get young people involved in fitness and health activities. His approach certainly caught the imagination at the King’s Leadership Academy in the Dingle

It was a pleasure today to welcome Love Island star Anton Danyluk to Liverpool today when he went to the King’s Leadership Academy in the Dingle as part of a UK tour as World Merit Ambassador on Health & Fitness.

Anton is using his UK Appearance Tour to drive his long-held mission to promote good health and wellbeing.

For the past three years, Anton – who runs his own health and fitness retreat, “The Ranch” in Airdrie, Scotland – has been on a mission to engage young people in the conversation about Good Health and Wellbeing. By visiting schools, Anton will be  encouraging the younger generation to look after themselves by showing his audiences that “exercising can be fun”, while addressing the importance of both mental and physical health in such a critical moment for young millennials as they face so many challenges. 

That’s certainly what he did today. About 100 young people listened intently to his 21 day challenge to do one healthy thing for 21 days or not do one unhealthy thing for the same period. “Do that”, he said and the likelihood is that you will have acquired a habit for life.”

Anton spoke movingly about his own experiences as an obese 14-year-old who was frequently bullied and whose life changed when his Mum dragged him to the gym. This was his habit which he has kept to ever since.

“I always believed that, when introduced to exercising in a fun and engaging way, kids love it! If they start young, the chances are that they will continue to strive for a healthy lifestyle,” added Anton Danyluk. 

Anton’s focus on joining the Villa in 2019 was always to use the experience as the platform he needed to further what he sees as his life’s mission, his passion then led to World Merit and their UN partners asking him to take on the role which will give him an even bigger platform.  

“Mental health has always been incredibly important to me. If the Love Island experience has taught me one thing, it is that ‘mental health’ is a verb that needs constant working on. So many people are watching our every move and I want to make sure I set a strong example. Talking about and working on your mental health is key in living a healthy life,” said Anton Danyluk. 

Anton had already shown his commitment to helping this younger audience long before anyone knew who he was, back in 2016 he was on YouTube charting his work with schoolchildren who were given opportunities to come and work with him at the Ranch on improving their health and fitness.  This commitment led directly to World Merit approaching him with to work alongside them reaching a global community of young people. 

As well as being United Nations partners, World Merit are known for being a truly global youth movement which empowers millennials around the world to come together, providing them the resources and opportunities to tackle social problems in their communities and providing rewards for their work. 

Partnered with the United Nations in 2015, World Merit became the first global youth movement to promote the Sustainable Development Goals after previously hosting incredible speakers like Nobel Prize winner Malala Yousafzai and world leading educationalist Sir Ken Robinson in Liverpool in 2014.   

Our Chief Executive, Marlou Cornellisen says, “We are incredibly excited to have Anton as our Ambassador for UN SDG3: Good Health and Wellbeing. I have witnessed the work of hundreds of thousands of changemakers across the globe and they all have something in common; a desire to bring positive change to their communities. We strive to reach as many young people as possible to let them know there is this whole community of support available to them as we facilitate an environment to build their confidence and raise their aspirations.   Anton’s work fits brilliantly with World Merit and the United Nations’ mission to achieve Good Health and Wellbeing across all of the UK and beyond.”

I’m now giving to have further talks with Anton’s management company about how he can work more with World Merit and with councils UK wide to promote health and fitness amongst young people. With 30% of our 11 year olds obese and 3% of 11 year olds morbidly obese we must find new ways of involving them in health activity and lifestyles. Who better to help them on their journey to fitness than Anton who has made that journey himself? As he said today, he didn’t set off to become a celebrity on a TV show. He did it to make himself healthy so that he had the mental and physical strength to take on challenges and pull himself out of a life that was sad and would probably go nowhere.

If you want to sign up to Anton’s 21- day challenge you can find the detail at www.worldmerit.org.uk. You don’t have to be young to do it – you do have to be determined!!

 If you want Anton to address a group of young people in your city please get in touch with World Merit via anton@worldmerit.org.

About richardkemp

Leader of the Liberal Democrats in Liverpool. Deputy Chair and Lib Dem Spokesperson on the LGA Community Wellbeing Board. Married to the lovely Cllr Erica Kemp CBE with three children and four grandchildren.
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