Grove Court and Moorside Primary School Intergenerational Activity

Many people can experience social isolation in many ways. Some live on their own, and others have their nearest and dearest around them but still experience a sense of loneliness. This is what we had seen with the residents at Grove Court, in Ovenden.

Many older adults were isolated and reluctant to socialise and engage with others due to the fear of covid-19 still being present. Grove Court is a Together Housing Residency with facilities of a large community room and kitchen, yet this was not being used much by the residents.

June Harvey, who runs the Memory Lane Cafés in Calderdale and another volunteer have recently volunteered more of their time to run a weekly Bingo activity every Thursday afternoon for the residents at Grove Court in the community room. This was to support residents to interact and socialise, play a fun game of Bingo, share a brew and a natter and to reduce isolation and loneliness.

Following a meeting with June, Zain (Staying Well worker in North) and Linsay (Community Wellbeing Officer for Together Housing) we decided to explore other ways to engage with more residents in Grove Court out of their rooms to reduce their social isolation.

Skipping forward a few weeks, another meeting was arranged with Paula Howarth (Pastoral Manager at Moorside Primary School) to discuss whether children from the school would like to support the Bingo activity as part of their programme with the Junior Warden Scheme. This idea was well received, and a plan of action was formed.

Fast forward a month, six children from Moorside Primary School attended the Bingo activity with a total of 12 residents attending. This intergenerational activity benefited both generations by bringing a new dynamic into the activity, bringing new energy and conversation between everyone, and putting smiles on everyone’s faces!

We were also delighted to be joined by the amazing Tony Austin, guitar player and musician who plays at the Daisy Chain café at Blackburn House. Tony played a variety of songs from the 1940’s and 1950’s of which everyone played Musical Bingo (crossing out the songs on their card Tony was playing). The children helped the residents in completing the Bingo cards, engaging in conversation, and supporting with handing out snacks and drinks.

Overall, the Bingo was an even bigger success with more people coming out of their own rooms to take part in this activity. As an outcome from this, Moorside Primary School have arranged to send six new pupils down once a month to support in the activity with dates for the next academic year to be discussed in September 2022.

Similar event at the Daisy Chain cafe, picture not related to this article

 

Vita Health Group on Combatting Loneliness and Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Health Awareness and Combatting Loneliness

Mental Health Awareness week takes place from 9th-15th May 2022, and this year’s theme for the week is Loneliness. Never before has it been more important to give mental ill health the time it deserves and break down the stigmas associated with this devastating and destructive illness that so many of us suffer with.

As many people will be aware, one of the big contributing factors to mental ill heath these days is loneliness. We know that loneliness is affecting more and more of us in the UK and has had a huge impact on our mental health, not least because of the pandemic and ongoing lockdowns we have all experienced.

We know that our connection to other people and our community is paramount to protecting our mental health, and as such, we all need to work together to find better ways to tackle loneliness, both within ourselves and within others. Because reducing loneliness is a major step towards a healthier society.

Loneliness and its impact on our mental health

Loneliness is a normal human feeling, which almost everyone will experience at some point in their lives.

Generally, it presents itself in a feeling of being isolated or disconnected from others. It may also manifest itself as a feeling of not being understood or cared for.

When we are on our own, but don’t want to be, it’s natural for us to feel a bit lonely and sad. We may start thinking in a negative or self-critical way, which can lead to low motivation and social withdrawal. Without active coping strategies, this pattern may continue to make our mood even lower and result in more negative thoughts and avoidance responses. This is what we call the vicious cycle of loneliness.

VitaMinds is here for you.

Vita Health Group celebrates life. Improving lives physically and mentally drives everything we do.

We work in partnership with the NHS to provide mental and physical health services, work with the UK’s largest companies to help support their workforce and provide a full range of physiotherapy services to private customers.

Mental Health Awareness Week 2022 : #IveBeenThere

Mental Health Awareness Week is running from 9-15 May and this year’s theme
is exploring the impact of Loneliness and seeks to encourage people to ‘lift someone
out of loneliness’.

Why loneliness?

Loneliness is affecting more and more of us in the UK and has had a huge
impact on our physical and mental health during the pandemic. Our
connection to other people and our community is fundamental to protecting
our mental health and we need to find better ways of tackling the epidemic of
loneliness. We can all play a part in this.

Get involved

You can visit the Every Mind Matters loneliness webpage for support and
advice on dealing with loneliness. It also has a Mind Plan quiz, to get a
personalised mental health action plan with practical tips to help you deal
with stress, anxiety, low mood and trouble sleeping, plus advice on how to cope
with feelings of loneliness.

Visit www.nhs.uk/every-mind-matters/lifes-challenges/loneliness/

Official Launch of the Staying Well Community Fund

We would like to introduce our very own Staying Well Community Fund and the three different types of funding we offer. We are keen to work with community groups, small community associations, organisations, projects and initiatives that work in and around North Halifax to reduce social isolation and loneliness, help individuals and communities to get moving more, and finally, offer support to groups who are financially vulnerable due to the challenges of Covid and want to keep their vital support/service going.

To clarify the areas we work in for North Halifax, these areas are: Ovenden, Mixenden, Illingworth, Warley, Pellon, Shelf and Northowram (and all the in between places too!). We have colleagues across other localities in Calderdale. Should you have an idea in another area we can put you in touch with our colleagues.

All information and further detail of our funds can be found on the Staying Well website: https://stayingwellhub.com/2020/09/26/staying-well-funding-for-community-groups/.

You can contact the team on stayingwellproject@calderdale.gov.uk
or ring 01422 392 767 and ask for either Zain or Craig if you have any ideas or just want to talk through any support you are needing.

We look forward to working with you all in 2022!!

This fund is open to application from starting and existing organisations, targeting loneliness and social isolation, particularly delivering services for COVID support.

Staying Well Community Fund open to applications

Sometimes all you need is a cuppa and a chat.

Of course a little financial help never hurts!

Staying Well has been a supporting presence for many who have found themselves isolated.

Their telephone befriending service, largely depending on volunteers, has been a helpful presence. The team has offered emotional support, finding social outlets where available and being a much needed listening ear.

We are delighted to announce that Staying Well is now in the position to offer  practical support as well in the form of the newly launched Community Fund.

This fund is open to application from starting and existing organisations, targeting loneliness and social isolation, particularly delivering services for COVID support.

For more information on the Staying Well Community fund, contact the team on stayingwellproject@calderdale.gov.uk

Loneliness Engagement Fund

[Excerpt from Gov.uk]

The Loneliness Engagement Fund provides small grants between £15,000 and £50,000 to organisations who can engage with target groups at high risk of loneliness. The fund will give out up to £260,000 of grants in total.

Purpose and aim of this fund

Feeling lonely is something we can all relate to, but admitting we feel lonely can be much harder. The government’s loneliness communications activity targets a broad audience, recognising that anyone can feel lonely, and that we all have the power to help those around us.

The objective of the Loneliness Engagement Fund is to reach the groups in England most affected by loneliness during COVID-19 with communications and engagement activity that will help reduce feelings of stigma, and encourage people to take steps to help themselves and others.

Eligibility

We will fund charities or benevolent and philanthropic organisations who have a track record of delivering effective communications and engagement activity at a national level; and who have a proven reach and track record of engaging with one or more of the target groups:

  • young people aged 16-24
  • people with diagnosed mental health conditions
  • people living alone
  • people from lower income households
  • unemployed people
  • disabled people

The fund is open to charitable, benevolent and philanthropic organisations from across England, and applications should be for between £15,000 and £50,000.

This funding is for organisations to continue, adapt or expand existing activity that reaches groups at a higher risk of loneliness and supports the government’s loneliness objectives. All project activities must have concluded and funds must be spent by 31st of March 2022. We can only fund activities in England.

The value of the grant requested must not represent more than 50% of the applicant’s annual income.

For Eligibility and Application details: Read full article

Grab the Perfect Christmas Gift for a Gentleman Over 55

phoenix-shed-xmas-cardAre you stuck finding a present for the older man in your life, or maybe for your Grandad?

Look no further than The Phoenix Shed Membership Christmas Card, complete with a full year membership to be a part of The Phoenix Shed at Threeways for just £20.

The Phoenix Shed, located at the Threeways Centre, Nursery Lane, Ovenden, HX3 5SX is open for business to all men aged over 55 so take advantage of this great offer and get involved.

A shed is many things to many men, but The Phoenix Shed caters for everyone and has a great deal to offer, including friendship.

In the Social Area:

A marvellous social area with comfortable seating and a fully fitted kitchen, which is great if you just want to come for a drink and a natter, or do whatever you want to do.

  • Computers are available, with all the assistance you need from beginners to advanced.
  • How about a jigsaw table, or play cards.  Plenty to read – in fact it’s YOUR SHED – come and make some suggestions.  You might even like to learn how to cook up a great meal – we can help!

In the Workshop Area:

  • The Shed is your oyster.  Want to make something?  A garden gate, a bird table, or repair that old chair?  Do a bit of wood or metal work turning?  The workshop can help you to realise that long wished for project, subject to Health and Safety Training.
  • Don’t have the skills?  Well there’s bound to be someone else who can help you along the way.
  • Do you have a skill that could be passed on to fellow chaps?
  • We already have several projects just waiting for your skills.

The shed is currently opening every Monday and Wednesday – 09.30am to 4pm both days.  There may be more sessions when need is established.

Social Membership is £20 per year, which gives you access to all that the Social Area has to offer.  Workshop is £2 per session.

If you would like to know more, just ring Eddie 07481 543881, or Chris 07930 207537, or come to The Shed and see what we can do for you.  We look forward to seeing you there.